Being a Theatre Mom, by LeeAnn Kole
Water? Check. Snack? Check. Dance shoes? Change of clothes? Script? Check, check, check. I have this down now. I am a theatre mom.
I have three children, two of whom are in college majoring in…theatre! Of course, I am a theatre mom, right?
What has thrown me for a loop is my third child. We always said Zachary was the perfect audience member; he cheerfully sat through show after show, mostly in the center of the front row, watching Amy and Jeremy dance, sing and act their way through middle and high school. Sure, he went to Creative Adventures Camp in the early years and then, his first summer he was eligible, went to the “big kids” camp (as he called it) but walked away after that summer, content to be the one in the family who plays sports.
So why am I suddenly buying dance shoes? And dance pants? And watching rehearsal schedules? Because Zachary has been bitten by the bug…the acting bug.
I have always enjoyed how theatre brought Amy and Jeremy so close. They have spent years going over scripts and roles together, singing musicals from beginning to end on our car trips, sharing their frustrations and joys in the theatre and building bonds that are so strong, even being separated by hundreds of miles because of their different schools, they are still deeply connected.
After Zachary went to camp this summer at SCT, forced by his “mean mom” due to scheduling issues, he came home in love. And much to our shock, ready to stay on stage, just like Amy and Jeremy! This weekend we went to visit Jeremy at school in New York City, and as I watched the interaction between my college freshman and my 7th grader I realized that, yet again, theatre was creating new bonds between these brothers.
Want to really get Zachary angry? Ask him if he really wants to act or if he is “just doing this because of the older kids.” For now, he is quite serious about this interest, and he keeps telling us he is going to college for this. He is young and has plenty of time to change his mind a million times. But, just in case, I have not thrown away any of the materials I have from Amy’s and Jeremy’s college audition process and Jeff is never planning on retiring!!!
And I am very happy to be a theatre mom…still.