I’ve found myself putting off writing this blog not just because I’m a procrastinator (although this is true), but because when I submit it that means Ragtime is finally over. It’s only been a week since our last big gathering, but I already miss this show. Sure, I’m glad to have around 20 hours a week back, but I miss spending those 20 hours with our incredible cast and crew.
Yes, I’m sad to be done with Ragtime, but I know I’ll look back on this experience fondly. As with any production we had our stressful moments, but they were nothing compared to all the great times we shared. And although I’ll definitely remember the shows and the rehearsals, I’ll remember our stories and our jokes just as well. I’ll remember laughing for hours when I was tabling with Matt and Bryan, trying to sell as many tickets as possible. I’ll remember the 11 PM post-rehearsal dinners with Jordan and Martavius. I’ll remember all of us coming together to take apart our monster of a set during strike (although-sorry Karmyn-admittedly I’m a little disappointed that we didn’t ACTUALLY get to trash the car).
I’m not sure what the overall effect of this production was. Do I think our show raised questions about important issues that are still affecting Duke and society in general? Yes, I do. But these are big questions, and I’m not sure how well we got our message across, or if anyone is going to listen to it. I’m not sure it’s possible for us to ever really know what the large-scale impact of this production was. I’d like to think we each did our part as storytellers to try and make a meaningful statement, though.
And while we may not be able to see the big picture quite as clearly, I was very aware of how doing this show affected our cast and crew. The message of the show was not lost on us, as what started out as a room full of small, pre-existing circles during our first class grew closer and closer by the day. We became a living example of Tateh’s dream for this country: “white, black, Christian, Jew, rich, poor, all kinds.” We were a collection of very different individuals who all came together to create something much greater than just the sum of its parts, becoming a family along the way. And while the show may be over, the friendships and memories we made will last a lifetime.