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What I Learned From Being in a Musical

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Theater isn’t a hobby. It’s a way of life. This semester, I had the absolute pleasure of performing on stage with a wonderful group of people who I got to call castmates. While I have participated in assisting behind the scenes for Cairn musicals in the past, I never had the ability to step onto the stage with the other actors and actresses. This semester, that changed. For the first time, I stepped onto the stage for a musical. The Secret Garden was probably one of the best musicals for me to take part in. It challenges you emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. I learned so much from the musical itself: love is not confined to physical appearance, death never permanently separates us from those we love, there is always someone out there who needs us, and more. Perhaps more importantly, beyond the backdrop and the props, I discovered family.

Photo Credit: Cairn University
Photo Credit: Cairn University

We always praise Cairn for its tight-knit community, but let’s admit it, even Cairn University has cliques. People tend to gravitate towards those that are like them. However, for the musical, people from a vast array of majors came together for the common purpose of glorifying God through song and performance. I, an English major, got to interact with history majors, music majors, graduate students, and more. And there was no exclusion. We all came together and formed a family. Hugs were common, smiles abundant, and laughter often accompanied by tears of joy. Once strangers, when we pass each other on campus now it ignites a smile and conversation. During tech week, we were exhausted mind, body, and soul. But through those common struggles, we bonded. We sympathized with each other and supported each other. When one cast member was having a tough time, we all were, and we prayed for each other and did our best to cheer everyone up.

Picture Credit: Rachel Krodel
Picture Credit: Rachel Krodel

The Secret Garden was my last (and first) performance on the stage of Cairn University. My biggest regret is that I didn’t step onto the stage sooner. I am so very grateful that I had the chance to encounter this once-in-a-lifetime experience with this cast of fantastic human beings, and these are memories that I will cherish far past graduation. And as I look forward to my future beyond the campus of Cairn, I know that my experience with this cast helped me to change and grow in ways that only God can direct. These are friendships that will last long after I’ve walked across the stage to take my diploma. Once a family, always a family.

Thank you, cast and crew of The Secret Garden. The work was hard, the hours long, but the performance was fantastic and I will never forget this experience. May God bless you all in your future endeavors, and remember: to God be the glory in all things.

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