June 3, 2015

The Lost Colony + Little Miss

On Valentine's Day, we celebrated my uncle's life- affectionately known as Big Gully, Capt Vern, Goat....On a day known for celebrating love...we celebrated our love for him by sharing stories from the book of his life.

The following week, Little Miss auditioned for The Lost Colony. She practiced a poem to recite in front of the director- a simple poem about bears that she said reminded her of Big Gully. My stomach was in knots for her...but she held her head high and wasn't nervous at all.

About 6 weeks later, we heard back from her audition. Unfortunately, the news wasn't what we wanted to hear. They encouraged her to audition again next year because she did a phenomenal job. Little Miss was devastated. (I'm talking- homegirl was ready to start a riot.)

A month went by- she would ask here and there when the play was starting. Followed by, "Mama- I don't think I can go watch it this year...I'm still so upset I didn't make it." I told her we didn't have to...but tried to encourage auditions again. 

A few weeks ago, I heard from the casting director again.

"Is Riya still interested in acting? We have a child who couldn't make the summer commitment and Riya was at the top of our list!"

I almost dropped the phone. I may have screamed in his ear. {stage mom status}

Little Miss was to the moon with excitement. She couldn't wait to get to her first rehearsal and find out all the details of the part she would play in the longest-running outdoor drama in the United States.

On the first day of rehearsals, we gathered in the backstage area of Waterside Theater. I told Little Miss stories from my childhood- from playing backstage to walking across the stage on my high school graduation day...she was too enthralled with her own experience to hear my tales.

"This year...we will be doing something a little different. Each year, our narrator is dressed in somewhat of a graduates outfit- and reads from a book to help the audience understand some of the details in the show," said the director.

"This year- our 'historian' will be more of a local looking guy. A man with a white beard, a fishing cap and boat shoes...an older fisherman-type," he said.

I felt Little Miss tug at my arm.

"It sounds just like Big Gully, Mama!" she said.

I couldn't help but fight back tears. I was thinking the exact same thing. 

"He will pull two children from the audience each night to help him explain the story," he explained.

"I hope I get that part!" Little Miss whispered.

"Riya...can you come up here to stand with our historian...you'll be spending a lot of time together this summer!" he said.

The tears streamed down my face as the other moms surely thought I had lost my mind. {overly proud stage mom?} 

Little Miss stood next to the historian, beaming from ear to ear.

As the sun set beautifully over the sound that my uncle fished in daily, I knew he had something to do with this moment. Not only did Big Gully help get Little Miss into The Lost Colony...he got himself a part, right beside her, too.

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