The (Almost) Perfect 10

About a month ago wrapped up the 10th musical The Captain has directed at his high school.  It is also the 10th high school musical I have choreographed alongside him.  I felt this decade of musicals was a big deal, and so on closing night, the cast called him up on the stage, said a few words about the big “10” and gave him an amazing bouquet of balloons and flowers.  He was mortified but was OK with it in the end.  The Captain is very modest about his successes.  He actually turned a few shades of tomato.  Mission accomplished.

When The Captain took over the theater program over 10 years ago, it was following a director who was a legend at the school.  Kids can sometimes be strange (imagine that!), and they were none too accepting of “the new guy.”  It took time, but he made it.  And 10 musicals later, he really made it.  I believe this is a milestone that doesn’t occur often, so balloons, flowers and adequate blushing were required.

Being a director is extremely time-consuming.  We had both of our dudes during  the 10 years.  String Bean was just an  infant during the production time of the first musical.  I would wear him in a Baby Bjorn while I choreographed the dances.  Squishy came along four years later, just in time for me to demonstrate dance techniques a la Kevin Bacon.  I rode the ride alongside The Captain during the journey, filled with ups and downs,  crazy teenagers, overly involved parents and a fickle administration.  Ten spring musicals.

Here they are in order:

  • Once Upon a Mattress
  • South Pacific
  • Guys and Dolls
  • Footloose
  • Fame
  • The Boyfriend
  • Godspell
  • Crazy For You
  • Thoroughly Modern Millie
  • Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat

I am proud of The Captain and the almost perfect 10 shows.  I say almost perfect because some of them were bumpy rides.  In Footloose, he cast a brother and sister to play the parents of the wild and strong-willed Ariel.  The brother and sister sinister duo teamed up on him and attacked him on a social media website.  Anonymously, of course.  But, besides that little snafu in year four, it was almost smooth sailing.

The conclusion of the tenth musical.

So, in the words of Joseph, “Any dream will do,”  but three standing ovations also work.


28 thoughts on “The (Almost) Perfect 10

  1. I’ve always thought that directors are underrated who work with kids are hugely underrated. Well done, Captain!! Enjoy those balloons!!

    • Thanks, Addie! I agree – they are so underrated. I was extremely happy they gave him a little surprise on closing night. He was a little embarrassed, but also happy. 🙂

  2. Wow, I am thoroughly impressed !!!!! When I was in high school we did Grease and the mother of them all…Sound of Music (I think the director needed to be medicated by the end of that one…..) and can tell you I will always have fantastic memories thanks to teachers like Captain !

  3. Growing up in a home with a music teacher parent who was constantly putting together concerts and recitals, I can appreciate how much work went into your productions. I always laugh (and cringe) when people say teaching is an 8-3 job, weekends and summer off. Yeah. Right.

    Congrats to you and your man!

    • Thank you, Carrie! You are so supportive of us crazy teachers! When folks say things about how much free time teachers have, I laugh like a psychopath. Usually they stop talking and stare. Mission accomplished as I am sure they will think twice before saying it again!

      • Well, I am surrounded by teachers in my family, and I almost was one myself. A French teacher. Go figure. Now keep on laughing like a psychopath. It might scare your students too…

  4. Lovely tribute. I remember being in my high school musicals– 40 years ago! And some of our proudest moments and memories are when the kids were in the musicals- oldest son only in middle school but the 2nd son was in the pit orchestra during high school- so exciting. Congrats! He’s touching lives in ways that children will remember forever and often helps shape career choices.

  5. Wow! That is amazing! Do you guys feel like the real-life Emma Pillsbury and Will Schuester? Just kidding, but I bet you have seen your fair share of “drama” up there on the stage and off! No small feat. Congrats to you both.

  6. My husband was a director for a high school too. It drove me crazy! My kids were itty bitty and the long, late nights along with him proving himself to the unwilling students was tough. I bet he loves it, and it’s worth it though, right? :)Something about the theater that just kind of catches you up and runs away with you, isn’t there! Congrats to you both! I look forward to a time where I can help my hubby like you do. How fun to do it together!!

    • We have fun most of the time. Many rehearsals, I am the good cop and he is the bad cop. It works! He gets a little testy when I am teaching the dances because I like to change things as I am going (if it looks silly or something)! It is nice to know you can totally relate to the craziness of it all!

  7. Wow! Hats off to both of you. Putting on a theatrical production in High school is, well, quite a production. It’s all consuming, isn’t it? Soo much work. The picture of the final musical looks really professional – the beautiful costumes, the staging, etc. Great Job! Glad you shared this with us : )

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