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Monday, October 20, 2003

"It's summer again, right? / Children make good teachers too!"

Man, I tell you, this weather is nice! I'm dreaming of summer again! Right now it's actually a balmy 75 degrees in my part of Milwaukee, and still an absolutely beautiful day. Throw in the vibrant colors that are gracing the leaves, and how can you not want to be outside!

Today, I gave my sister a helping hand with another one of her theatre workshops, this time out in Waukesha, a suburb of Milwaukee. I could tell though that the children were a little eager to enjoy the outdoors instead of being cooped up indoors. The weather was beautiful and the sun was shining brightly, but with so much to do in the class today, there wasn't time in the two and a half hours to take in the sun.

The class was enjoyable though nonetheless. It feels good to share my time and theatre knowledge with these children. This Monday class unfortunatly has a younger collection of kids, who are a little more into the games and warm-up exercises than the overal theatre knowledge. The Saturday class, however, (and my personal favorite of the two) seems to have a lot more children whose passion for theatre is unmistakable in their eyes. You can't help but notice how eager they are to perform. Working with them, really rejuvinates someone like myself. I see so much excitement and drive in the kids, it actually helps to renew my confidence in my own acting endeavors!

But it also makes me think.... I don't quite have that kind of excitement anymore. Oh, don't get me wrong, my passion for the trade is far from unquenchable, but it just makes me realize, I truely am getting older. It's a lot harder to remain excited sometimes. By the time theatre starts to become a career interest, as it has for me, the challenge becomes a lot greater. By this point, other things like agents, headshots, personal image, auditions, fierce competition, and the like, all enter the picture.... and it gets a heck of a lot more frustrating!

Why does it have to be so hard to do what you truely have a passion for? I guess that's just life, right? Man, but if I had some of this passion these kids have, ...bye-bye frustrations! There just wouldn't be room for that anymore!

There is, though, one lesson I see played out before me every time I help out with these theatre workshops, kids make great teachers too. Yes, we-re teaching them the basics of theatre.... but if we pay close enough attention, they're teaching us not to lose our own youthful interests.

So, now I sit here at my computer -- a few hours later -- and I get to thinking.... I'm glad I was asked to help out with my sister's theatre workshop(s). I may have been a little reluctant at first, having not worked in this capacity -- with this many children -- for a couple of years, but no more. This really is a lot of fun.

Take the opportunity to watch a child at play.... You can learn a lot from their youthful perspective -- a lot that can be applied to your own endeavors. Kids can be excellent teachers too, and they don't even know they're doing so.

Enjoy your Tuesday. Have a blessed day, and until next time,

Your happily blogging actor friend,

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Jon Baas

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