Care-Fronting My Director

Last
Sunday, I posted a blog entry that revealed how a brave 15-year-old
inspired me to reclaim my love for singing. One of the actions I listed
to reclaim my love for singing was to care-front the director of “A
Chorus Line” with a clean, blame-free communication which addressed an
event that made me give up singing for many years afterwards.

I
composed a Facebook message that same Sunday night. FIVE MINUTES LATER,
she wrote back! What she wrote blew my mind and made me emotional.
Below is what she wrote:

“I am very moved and blown
away by your message and it brought me to tears. I am going to listen
to your songs tomorrow because it’s late right now and I was actually in
bed on my way to sleep when your message came in. I will write you back
more too.

But let me just say this tonight. You WERE right for
Richie and you did a FABULOUS job with the role. Just because you
couldn’t hit a couple of notes doesn’t mean that it wasn’t the right
part for you. And you are right, as a director I look to put on the best
show and sometimes that means tweaking some things a bit. Many shows
I’ve directed have had modifications of some sort. It’s creating a work
of art that is molded to its perfection.

You would make an
awesome Emcee. I directed that show as well. Love that song you
mentioned and I am looking forward to hearing you sing it.

More
to be shared tomorrow. ACL will always hold found memories – you made it
special with the rest of the cast. I am very proud to have brought such
an incredible piece of work to the stage!

So here’s a little more to add to my message that I wrote to you late last night. I do remember the incident that you referenced in
your message after I reassigned some of Richie’s vocals to NAME (I, Jorge, removed his name)  On a
personal level, I felt very bad making that decision, but as you said
and I agreed, I did it for the show. I recall that we were moving close
to production week and sitting in the back of the auditorium looking at
the line and seeing an open space. I didn’t realize who was missing at
first, and then our assistant manager told me it was you …
that you were upset and went to the restroom. I realized it had
bothered you very much and I felt bad. When I directed Cabaret, I
had to pull an entire song from the fellow who played Cliff. It just
wasn’t working for him. The song is often struck from the show, so it
really didn’t impact the run of the show. But it made me feel really
bad as well, but it was for the good of the show.

I see now that you will be directing some music
videos. I don’t know your other directorial experiences, but I would
imagine that you have had to make some tough decisions as well. And if
you haven’t, you will more than likely come across times when you will.
You know the saying … "it’s lonely at the top.” Well, it’s true.

I’ve listened to the links that you sent me and I’ve
read your blog about Juliet and how she inspired you. Very well written
piece. The vocals are wonderful and you are a very talented singer. I’m sorry that the experience in ACL impacted your choice not to further
your singing career. Don’t know if you knew this, but you were not the only male with dark
skin (who auditioned for “A Chorus Line”) I will still go by what I said before …you were a fabulous
Richie!

So, without rambling any more, I’ll close by saying I
wish you well in all your future endeavors in the entertainment world,
whatever they may be. I like reading your FB posts. I
have a VHS tape of our ACL show … and I’d be happy to make you a DVD
of it … if you would like. Just let me know. Again … wishing you
well.“

The exchange we had really created a powerful
sense of resolution and closure for me. I can move on cleanly and
powerfully from this. The event I experienced many years ago no longer has a hold on
me. I hope that my experience inspires you to care-front someone or
something in your life right now. Because the biggest lesson I learned
from all of this is to DO IT NOW. I had a failed purpose with singing
for MANY years. That could have been easily avoided if only I
had handled this immediately. Do it now. Handle it now. Don’t wait to
take care of something.

For those who want to read what inspired today’s blog entry and to have a context, here is the one I posted on September 6th:

http://chasingthegeorge.tumblr.com/post/128462135057/how-a-15-year-old-inspired-me

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