I’d like to start this final post with a story about Max, a bright, expressive and hyper student who can teach us all a lesson on persistence, humbleness, and dedication.
Max ran into Amy last night at around midnight outside of his hotel room. He was 3 hours past his curfew and he definitely was not reviewing his show material. The final day arrived, and Amy put him to the test. Max did not know his music at 10am this morning, and he was stripped of his character to join the ensemble. Choreography for the first number of the day started, and Max was dragging. He was removed from the number and the team continued with the rest of the students.
For a lot of us, this would be the point where we quit, open up our phones and play Candy Crush, text our bestie or just take a nap. Not for Max though, this is where he stepped up and shined. As the students learned the choreography for Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, Max watched through the glass door outside and tried to learn the choreography. He practiced his words and then apologized to Amy and asked for another chance. He had a change of heart, and he wanted to work with the passion driving him inside. With a second chance, Max became a standout for the final performance, with some of the best facial expressions and purpose oozing out of his pores.
It’s a true testament to being driven, to failing and letting it drive you to focus, be fearless, and never give up. When the English they were learning was tough, or the choreography was fast, it’s easy to throw your hands up and say it isn’t possible. The journey was rocky at times and a few students quit under the pressure. Max could teach us all a lesson, and it’s how I will best remember every student on this trip. His story echoes the story of so many other students in that very room. They impressed me, and they reminded me how high I should be driving myself in my own life.
The students learned intense choreography for two very complicated numbers before lunch and put the entire show together for the first time this morning- and wow what a difference! The first two runs throughout were rocky, and with a quick reminder from Amy to do everything with purpose, the final show began. It was a testament to their hard work, dedication, and you could feel the fervor and excitement from the students. Amy welled up as the students joined together to finally sing “Let’s Go Fly A Kite”. Ribbons flew through the air, and you could feel the joy flowing out of each and every student. What a beautiful mutual exchange of culture, and a wonderful and necessary reminder to be tenacious in everything we do, both onstage and offstage. Thank you for letting me share my passion with you, and I cannot wait to see what is yet to come from these bright, driven young stars.
The celebration at the very end included the great pictures below of the final performance, and some tearful and joyful moments of goodbye. We are hopeful to see these young inspirational students shine again in the near future.
Written By: Emily Seibert
Passport to Broadway Choreographer