This is not your normal school play. It is a lavish, expensive, giant production that involves every student at the school.
Her nephew, Camden, goes to Mount Madonna School in the Santa Cruz mountains. There are only about two hundred and fifty students in the entire school that covers Kindergarten to High School.
They perform the Ramayana every year (in early June when the Ramayana is traditionally performed), and every student must appear in the production. When you are young you must play an animal; a frog, a chick, a lizard, etc, ... and as you grow older you "graduate" in to larger roles. By the time you get to Junior High and High School you have to start auditioning for the larger, major speaking/singing roles. This is beautiful, as you can start imagining what big part you eventually would like to end up playing when you graduate.
And I imagine there are all kinds of rivalries, competitions, rumors, sweet romantic sub-plots, the typical poignant teenage angst, and drama involved with putting on this production every year. Two of the Senior girls were crying at their curtain call. It was a lovely thing to behold. How much of their young lives had been poured in to this production and their entire scholastic career? And now it was all over.
I tried to imagine myself going to this school. Who, ultimately, would I have played? I am not big or muscular enough to play Shiva, or Sri Ram, or (my fave) the ten-headed Demon King, Ravenna. I imagine I would play the lead monkey character or the comic relief part of Bonehead, except, I can actually sing, and neither of those roles are called on to sing.
It was fun to ponder all these things. And the three and a half hour production went by pretty darn quick, actually.
(Renee and I will still prob wait to see it again when Camden is in High School, I think.)
"Pretty cool," as Anthony from Bottle Rocket would say, ...
|Camden Diskowski as a member of the Bheen Tribe. His turban is over thirty feet long!|
All my love, back to work, Ugh!