...and as the saying goes, "It was better than Cats."
But it was Cats! A friend of mine is featured in a local production, and I just had to go see her. After all, it's been years since I've watched the taped production and even longer since I saw it on stage. Goodness, I don't think I've even listened to it for a super long time. I did perform "Macavity: The Mystery Cat" a year to two ago, but other than that, Cats and I have been relatively estranged.
As I've noted before, I am a theatre person. I love stage craft. It's pure magic in my book, especially when it's done well. And the love affair all began with this show.
My dad was a stereo fanatic. So when he brought home this large flat square labeled Cats, I had no idea what was in store. From the square, he pulled a shiny round disc with tons of grooves and popped it onto his record player. He'd purchased the LP for my mom, but I know I asked him many times to play it for me.
When I was in sixth grade, for my birthday, I received tickets to attend the tour performance of Cats at the Pikes Peak Center in beautiful downtown Colorado Springs. We had just moved from Woodland Park, a small mountain town, so the city life was quite appealing. I even remember what I wore--a long, soft pink sweater dress with a lace underskirt. I felt so grown-up.
Until I bawled like a baby through the overture. I couldn't help it! The stage lit up with a million white Christmas lights that twinkled in time with the music. A spectacular junkyard had been recreated on stage as a playground for human kitties. A few dancers even traversed the aisles as they joined together to the unsettling plunks of the first few notes. But when the music resolved into ear-tickling beauty, amazing things took place. The lights came up, and I was hooked.
The other night, I got to share that same magic with my six-year-old daughter. The venue was a church, not a music hall. The dancers were volunteers, not paid professionals. But the electricity in the air was the same. At least, it was for me. I think my little girl felt it, too. She was mesmerized throughout the first act. A trip to the concession stand at intermission bought her attention for the last half. Who can resist bribery by M&Ms, huh?
I know she didn't "get" it. She's too little to fully understand the weight of each word and how they link together to create a fantastical story. There are parts of this show I don't get, and I've listened to the cast album thousands of times. But it was an introduction. It's a start. I know she's already been bitten by the theatre bug, so this little nibble is bound to lodge in her memory. All alone in the moonlight. I can smile at the old days...
Oh, I'm sorry. Did I just slip into song? Well, bust my buttons.
If you're not familiar with Cats, you should try to see it at least once. It's different, but the music is phenomenal. And you will laugh. You will cry. Every good production should elicit such emotion.
Even if you're a dog lover.
One of my favorite movies is Ever After. I lived alone in California when it came out, and I went to see it in the theater many times. By myself. I know it's not the best movie ever made, but there's something absolutely charming about it. Between the Cinderella plot and the costumes, I can easily lose myself for a couple hours in that story.
Throughout the movie, Henry (the prince), bemoans his existence and seeks his purpose. It's humorous at times, but when he does finally settle on something he's passionate about, his entire countenance changes. The burden falls from his shoulders, and he's free to woo Drew Barrymore. Life is good, a few other things happen, and they all live happily...Ever After.
What if you know your purpose, but you just can't do anything about it?
Henry is the fictional prince of France, with endless resources at his disposal. Danielle, on the other hand, is a servant in disguise. While Henry can act, Danielle must scheme. While Henry can pursue, Danielle must hide. Yet in the end, Danielle triumphs. She wins the heart of the prince, despite her lowly station, and changes the world.
I think our purpose finds us, regardless of where we are. I didn't want to be a writer. I've said many times here in this blog, my lifetime career goal was to be a stage manager on Broadway. Distractions, sidetracks, and circumstances twist the path of life in new directions, and somehow, we end up where we're supposed to be.
Now that I've found my identity in writing, though, it's all I want to do. I wake up in the morning, wanting to write. I go to bed, wanting to write. A brand new story found me today, and I'd love to get some of that scrawled out. In this season of my life, it's a little more difficult to block out a four or five hour chunk of time. I have to grab it where I can.
If you don't know your purpose, let me encourage you to consider what it may be. Think through the things you're good at and the things you enjoy doing. Is there some cross-over? Once you find it, cling to it. Cultivate it. And use it to bless others.
That's what purpose is for, after all.
I'd like to invite you to check out my story and testimony on SpeculativeFaith.com today.
Award-winning sci-fi author * Christ follower, wife, and mom * broadcast content producer. And yes, I am a real duchess. http://amzn.to/2eLTlH3