When I saw the Coulton show on Friday, I was reminded how much I want to do just that. I want to be on stage performing for hundreds or thousands of people.
Someday, I'll have a plan. And maybe even some talent.
Most people are petrified of public speaking. Surveys have show that people fear public speaking more than they fear death. I am not one of those people. I've always gotten a charge out of it.
I still rememeber my first two stage experiences, brief, though they were.
Back in kindergarten at PS 97, each letter in the alphbet on our classroom wall had a character associated with it. We had to dress up as our favorite letter/character and go on stage with our class. Everyone got to say who they were and something about their letter.
I chose J -- for Mr. Junk. I thought he was the coolest of the letters. (Mr. Teeth was was the lamest of the letter characters -- his too tall smile was too goofy. I wanted to knock those teeth off the board and I didn't even know why (but that's another story (Or was he actually Mr. Tall with the very Tall teeth? Now I'm all confused))).
As I recall, my mother took a sheet or old pillowcase, sewed bits of household clutter to it and put a big J on the front.
I went on stage, said my part (probably, something like "I'm Mr. J") and stepped back into the alphabet row.
I don't remeber the rest of the day, or even what the play was about. But I do remember the view of the crowd from my side of the stage. All those people were looking at me and hanging on my words. And I couldn't wait to get on stage again.
For first grade I had moved on to St. Elizabeth's School in Ozone Park, NY. Each year, every grade level put on a play of some sort. My first year there, we put on some sort of Fairy Tale review.
I was Prince Charming.
I got to wear a purple cape with little hooks on it. (I think the cape is a highly underrated garment in these modern times. We really should bring back the cape.)
I was only on stage briefly. I was in a group of 5 or 6 kids. We each had to introduce ourserlves. I stepped forward, got down on one knee, reached my arms out, and said, "I'm Prince Charming" to the entrie student body.
I don't even remember who played my Princess that year. I just remember the feeling of power in front of that crowd.
And it's one I am happy to recapture whenever I can.
So what was your first brush with an audience? Did it empower you or scar you for years?