For the past three weeks now I have been dealing with an annoying cold. Just as soon as I would start to feel better…it would come right back. I was never able to really shake being sick. The week before the show, I started to feel a little better, but I still wasn’t one-hundred percent yet. But then, before I knew it, it was the day before opening night at I started to feel the sickest I had felt. I rested my voice and drank some tea and hoped it would be better the next day.
The next day I woke up and my voice was all raspy and was basically as I like to call it, non-existent. I would try to talk, but most of the time air would just come out. I had absolutely no idea what to do because I had never lost my voice before. Figures right, the first time I lose my voice is when I have to perform six shows! I went to my director and he recommended that I go to the grocery store to get some Lays Potato Chips (supposedly the salt helps?) and some Green Tea. I was on a strict Green Tea regiment for three days. I started to feel better, but my voice was still scratchy and rough. I had to do two shows that night and I pushed through like no other.
In Playtime Poppy shows we are told just to project our sound and we are not given microphones. However, because I couldn’t push my voice any farther, they gave me a microphone. At first, my director told me that I could go on as a mute and let the other people take over my lines. My response was, “This is my show and I have worked too hard to give my lines up! I will push through!” And that is exactly what I did. Yes it hurt, but I got through both those shows. I hoped and prayed that my voice would be better for the other four shows, however it stayed the same.
I was given a microphone for all six shows and my voice stayed pretty raspy. The character I was playing was a grumpy mom who had a problem with EVERYONE and had to be in charge at all times. With my voice the way it was, it fit my part even better! We even thought about adding an oxygen tank and a wig to my costume to make my voice look like the seventy-year old smoker I sounded like.
After every show while we were signing autographs, the little kids would always ask me what happened to my voice. I would just laugh it off and say, “Oh…it doesn’t exist!” This response would always make the little ones giggle. But by Saturday my voice was on its way to coming back! I was able to make it through whole sentences without squawking like a bird! It was great fun!
The main thing I learned from having no voice for three days was that no matter what the circumstance, the show must always go on! I pushed through even though it hurt and was uncomfortable! And it will be a show that I will always remember!
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