My theatre experience is one which is worth writing down. Theatre has been a strong source of entertainment and learning in my life, though unfortunately, I did not get enough opportunities to exercise this interest but I am always happy to experience it and open to be a part of it. So, this time when theatre actually happened it just felt like a free ride I have been longing for all my life.
To begin with, though I may not be able to recall all the events and moments but I will try my best to make this journey sound convivial. Check in and check out exercise, how often we care to recall our last days happening; what happened, what went around, was it even fruitful! But once you are encouraged and pushed to do it, an engrossing flash back lets you know that the day that went by made you a day older and a day wiser. Exercise was easy and fun but its impact was such that it did not take long to recall what happened. Some of us realized their sunday’s have become a routine they want to get rid of, some felt they aren’t utilizing the gift enough and rest thought it is the day in the week when we all relax. I can’t recall the real purpose of the exercise but whatever I did made me reflect deeply on last 24hrs, which were a mixed bag. Mindfulness about my existence was the biggest take away I could draw out of it. I have become increasingly conscious about my deeds and somehow feel there has to be reason and purpose in whatever we do, so tomorrow when I have to look back I can do so with comfort, joy and a sense of fulfilment.
There were many more exercises throughout the week which pushed us to the extreme limits of our endeavour. One such exercise which I can fondly recall, I do not remember the name of it probably because there wasn’t one, was looking into one another’s eyes with vigour and aspiration. The exercise was meant to derive energy out of our partner’s resolve and at the same time we were required to transfer the vitality we were brimming with. One more time it just felt as if it’s going to be a routine drill, but believe me, half way through it, just reminded me of some of the toughest assignments I have ever had. I will not deny I was lucky enough to get a beautiful partner to go through with this assignment, but the amount of stretching of ones focus, determination and strength that was involved was just a discovery of how much effort it takes to make things work in life. Looking into one another’s eyes with patience and holding their thoughts made me drench with eternal sweat. Sustainability is perhaps the word which would best sum up this wild yet controlled experience I had. – how so?
We were also asked to witness some of these energy and emotion draining exercises which made me think, ‘if I was going through these exercises what is that one thing I will need the most’. Answer was loud and clear in my head, peer support. And that is exactly what these warriors, who pushed themselves to the limit, got from us. I was thrilled to watch how everyone, witnessing their peers breaking limits, was shouting and rooting at the top of their voice. Except for the start of the exercise, it did not feel for a moment that it was something which was ought to be difficult. With all the support and music it just felt like a carnival, Football World Cup come early. I may be exaggerating a bit but trust me it was enthralling. Never had a clue being compassionate to your people could be this motivating and jubilant, you get more than you give.
Now came the assignment I had been waiting for, the theatre performance. I was fortunate enough to be the director of my team, believe me, whatever clichés you might have heard about director being captain of the ship are true. It was a tough task but a satisfying one!. Though I had to experience the pain of being away from my crew when they actually performed but being a part of the build-up did mitigate the pain to a large extent. I love my team, not because directors are forced to but because it was just the perfect mix of people I was looking for. Though we were robbed of some talent but as the saying goes, when the going gets tough the tough gets going and that is precisely what we did. We had lots of stories in our head and my team was working on those in my absence and finally when I got together with them, I knew I am short on time and long on work load. Situation demanded inspiration and that is precisely what we did to one another, inspire. Nor did it take us long to narrow down on the plot and assign characters, and neither was it too difficult to put life into those characters. Now we were empowered with imagination and motivation, and all geared up to show what diversity can do. Though I did not watch my team’s final performance, as I was in Italy on an exchange program, but I am quite certain the amount of work ethic every one of us had put in was a testament of purity and zeal and it would have definitely been reflected in our performance.
The theatre week was a revolutionary one. People just went from strength to strength. It was an empowering platform where everyone broke free from their shackles and exploded into monstrous flames, flames which could burn down oceans of depression and monotony and could show light to farthest ship ever trapped in an ocean – interesting analogy!. Before I write my final comments, I have to say this would not have been possible, if all of us had not put in sincere effort to make this week a memorable one. There was transparency and honesty on display and believe me it was a perfect SOIL like (ethical) experience we all savoured. Happy to have experienced it and delighted to be taking back strength, joy, feeling of vulnerability and fulfilment, and moments of ecstasy with me.
Also you can read – Pillars of Inspired Leadership – Theatre Learning