Today our team walked out on Passport to Broadway Los Angeles. Within five minutes, everything changed.
At first the team came in with high expectations and hopes to see how hard the students had worked overnight. I myself had students knocking on my hotel door at 9:30pm at night asking me to go over choreography with them. With high hopes and excitement our team braved Route 5 to make it to the studios, and after a quick caffeine stop, the day began.
After reviewing the first two numbers, the team quickly realized the majority of the cast did not know what they were doing. True to our promise to cut those who did not know what we were doing, we removed 21 students from the opening number. One of our favorite numbers, “Thirteen” was cut entirely. Two days’ worth of work and wind in our sails seemed to have left the studio and the spirits of everyone in the room.
At this point, Amy announced that the team would be leaving the room. We would be taking five minutes to allow the students to figure out why they were here and whether or not they wanted us to continue. Did they want to learn? Did they want an immersive, Broadway-like experience? Could they search into their hearts to figure out where their passion and purpose was?
After five minutes, the students asked us to come back. The change of heart in the students was almost instantaneous. With the core group of students left and dedicated to taking risks, being bold and bright, they worked immensely hard to work through four complicated songs. They revolted with intention and passion to Matilda’s spirit song, gently encouraged each other with help from the Wiz to believe in themselves, did a few heel clicks with the two Marys’ who had some useful medical advice, and got over their fear with Maria (and her extra partners in crime, Marty and Kendra). We even had a few students who were cut the day before prove to us that they did their homework, learned their songs, and were ready and fearless to take a second chance.
As the final day approaches, we’re hopeful the students will take a fearless leap forward and come in bright, bold and brilliant. We certainly think they are, and are waiting for them to show us what we already know they are truly capable of. I cannot wait to see the magic unfold tomorrow- can you? Take a look at some of the fun pictures below taken throughout the course of the day!
Written By: Emily Seibert