Let us explain. While it may seem odd to send correspondence to something that cannot necessarily respond, there is plenty we have to say to you, Theatre. And what better time than Thanksgiving to express our gratitude toward you and the ways you have bettered our lives.
Thank you for giving a voice to those who sometimes feel voiceless. Theatre expresses the thoughts and concerns of many who may feel unsure how to express these same thoughts and feelings. There are countless people who find themselves within timid characters not that different than Laura from The Glass Menagerie, and to hear her say the words they may have felt too scared to say is incredibly cathartic and empowering.
Thank you for giving us a window into the hearts and minds of people different than ourselves. Theatre allows an audience a passage into the mindset of a wide variety of people of different races, social backgrounds, sexual identities, and more. For two hours or more we can sit in a room living with the characters who we think differ from ourselves. As the drama unfolds, slowly our similarities begin to unravel before our eyes, redefining how we think about the world around us, and what we think of ourselves.
Thank you for bringing strangers together to experience a once in a lifetime opportunity. Together we experience emotions ranging from giddy and joyous to heartbreak and anxiety. While most of our communication now happens through text exchanges or instant messages, the sheer human beauty that is brought from a night at the theatre cannot be replicated. Our energy feeds the actors, who in turn perform slightly different in tune with each audience, creating a circuit of energy felt by everyone.
Thank you for giving us an outlet for expression. We live in a society where crying opening, shouting, fighting, or singing at the top of lungs while dancing madly is not socially acceptable…at least in public. This can encourage us to mask our emotions with a smile that feigns happiness. However, Theatre, on each of your stages, you have allowed a safe space where expressing ourselves is not only okay but required. No matter the emotion, whether it joy, anger, frustration, confusion, or sadness, you encourage us to celebrate the art of our inner turbulence, calling it forward to resonate the whole world wide.
Thank you for giving us an expressive and loving family besides the one to whom we were born. With production comes many hours in rehearsal with people who once may have only been acquaintances. However by the end of a run, we find ourselves aching to hang out with those people who we had just spent so much time with. They become like a second family, etching their way into our DNA, and influencing us for years to come.
While this letter may not do our feelings justice about you, Theatre, please know this. Without you, we would not be the people we are today. People who are dramatic. People who are aware. People who are sensitive. And, above all else, people who are empathetic.
Thank you, Theatre.
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