Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Viva La Vie Boheme!!!

Well, I made it. Back in LA, safe and sound. The sunny warm weather is helping to distract from the sadness of RENT being over and me missing everyone like crazy. I really do... nearly every show that I've done, the cast and crew had become a sort of new family, but this one was like nothing else.

When we got to the theatre I handed out personalized notes that I had written for everyone. Ben was practicing "Today For You" on stage so the rest of us ended up in the girls' dressing room dancing and singing. It was wonderful. Definitely bittersweet to have that explosion of joy all together, to put on the costumes and make up for the last time, to take pictures backstage before it was time for places. The show went really really well. I think all of us used the emotions we were feeling appropriately during the show. When the second act started I was all smiles. It was like all of us up on that stage had our own mini season of love..

From that point on though it got more difficult. I felt like the performances were fantastic, though there were definitely more tears than normal. I really started feeling it in "Without You", and was nearly crying by the end of the song. As soon as I started saying Angel's eulogy that's when I could no longer hold it together. And for me, the hardest part was, by far, trying to sing "I can't believe this is... goodbye". I don't think it was easy for any of us. When we were singing the Finale B, I don't think there was a dry eye on stage. Probably in the audience too.

After a lot of hugs and a few more pictures, we all made our way over to the J.Clyde for dinner and drinks. It was really great to have that time together, to wind down after the show and say our final goodbyes. We even sang Finale B for our waiters, though it was a good two or three steps too high. My fault, I take the blame. We sounded great though. After a few hours we all started to disperse... it was so so sad. The amazing Lauren even gave me her favorite scarf, which I had been begging to buy off her earlier in the day. I will cherish it forever and think of you every time I wear it L!

Ben, Dylan and his friends Kurt and Stephen, DaWonye, Stephanie and myself went over to the hotel and hung out at Ben's place for a while. I realized I still had to pack and gas up the car, so I made a fairly early night of it and headed over to the car. While driving to the gas station I realized I totally forgot to pay my bill at the restaurant so I went back. William, one of our waiters for the night, had worked some kind of magic on the computer and took some items off so it apparently ended up being like $5. I stayed there talking to him and Mae, our other waiter, for a while. Such nice people in Birmingham.

When I got back I packed most of the rest of my things and tried to get to sleep. I failed. I didn't get a wink of sleep for hours. I think I finally started dozing around 500 am, but I had to get up in order to shower and finish packing. Earlier on Sunday I had spoken with Susan, the woman who had picked me up from the airport when I arrived, and she said she was dropping me off as well. When the time came to meet her downstairs, I text'd her to let her know I was almost ready and I'd be down in a few minutes. I got a call from her immediately after that saying she had spoken to Kim and was told I was dropping the rental car off so I didn't need a ride. Luckily that was the original plan so it still worked out fine.

Even though I sent a 10 pound package home, I had bough a few other things and I had to put 5 pounds of things into my carry-on so as not to have to pay for the extra weight in my suitcase. I had a basically direct flight from B'ham to LA, but we stopped in St. Louis and Salt Lake City on the way. I arrived at 1:20 and was greeted by Evan. He drove me home so I could take a much needed nap, and then we went to dinner at Aroma Cafe in Studio City, one of my very favorite places ever. My neighbor Shaun had a screening of the first episode of his web series, Project Hollywood, at the Bungalow Club. I've always wanted to go there so it was nice to be able to check it out. My dear friend Sari also showed up which was a pleasant surprise.

I've got all day today to relax before I get back to work tomorrow. I'm already itching to do another show... Hopefully that will happen soon. Maybe I'll even audition for Disneyland so I can work with Ben! I'm going to have to plan something with the LA RENT people soon.

That's it for my RENT journey. I plan on keeping up with this blog and writing mainly about projects I'm doing. In the meantime... check out www.laurenab.wordpress.com. She always has fun things to say.


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