Well, this is by far my most tardy post, but considering all the end of summer and checking out activities at Barrett, I think it’s somewhat acceptable.
So it is now Friday 8/24, but I will give a quick report on my last week of tour in Upsala. For a town with a population size of only 450 or so, we had a decent amount of kids, 50 at auditions and 48 by the end of the week (a few dropped due to illness). Our sponsor’s name was also Marisa, spelled with one s, and funny enough, her husband’s name is Jason. She was very friendly, and we had a great week with the kids. 2 of our kids from the verrrryyyy first week back in Pierz, MN came back to do the show again! in Upsala (the towns are only an hour or so apart). So everything came full circle in this last week, as our Helena from week #1 played her again in week #10.
Though the booking was in Upsala, our hotel was in the nearby town of Albany. Not too much going on in either town, but since it was our last week, Jason and I kinda had our eyes on the end, rather than doing too much exploring.
- 2 of my groundlings, Maggie and Zoe: just two of the sweetest siblings I’ve encountered this whole summer. Maggie was adopted from India and Zoe from Guatemala. Their mother recently passed about 5 or 6 months ago and their father is recovering from a stroke about 2 weeks ago. And despite all this strife in their lives, they were both so grateful and positive! After every rehearsal, 7-year-old Zoe would tell me “Marissa, you made this really fun today.” And instantly my heart melted. :)
- My stage fright turned booty-shaking groundling, Max: on audition day, 8-year-old Max repeatedly told us he was too embarrassed to say the lines. Okay fine, he got cast as a groundling, my character group, where most don’t have any individual lines. To my surprise, by show day, Mr. Max is backstage dancing his butt off while other kids are performing onstage. Literally shaking his little booty back and forth, even smacking it! (like hes done these moves before). Pretty hilarious, hopefully a brief behind-the-scenes clip to come!
- for one last DIY hotel creation, I made chocolate covered strawberries (as pictured below), using a bar of chocolate I got from a kid the week before. Yum.
And that’s about it for the adventures in Upsala/Albany. After our last show on Saturday morning, we packed up and headed to Barrett a day early to start on laundry and other checkout activities. We had a fun night hanging with Chris and Jeremy, our bosses, the Beauty and the Beast team (Luke Newsome and Bridget Leary), Elizabeth Dunn from the Tom Sawyer team, and Rachael Hancz from the Robin Hood team. Finally, I watched the Hunger Games with everyone at the actor house, after much grief from all my college girlfriends about not reading or seeing it.
Then, Sunday, Jason and I checked out all items in our truck - costumes, set, props, you name it. That night, after Beauty left for their last week, and Elizabeth left for home, the remaining 5 of us went bowling in Alexandria! And as with all of our bowling adventures this summer, much fun was had. I peaked at 120 and all of my other scores paled in comparison.
Monday: I finally left Barrett for good (or at least for now). Though it felt goo to with done with tour, I was definitely a bit sad to leave Barrett. Despite some challenges here and there, and the repetition of the show growing a bit old, I really did have a great summer teaching and performing (and getting paid for it!) And I made lots of new actor/director buds, who I may not see ever again, or at least not until audition season.
But, after mustering up my strength to leave, I headed to Alexandria, took the shuttle to MSP airport, then took the Metro to downtown Minneapolis to hang with some WashU peeps until my flight early Tuesday morning. We had a lovely dinner in Minneapolis, getting our dessert and wine FREE because the waiter liked us, and thought I might be famous…hahah
And at 7 am on a bright Tuesday morning, I left the magical land of Winnescota. It’s been real, Minnesconsin, but Philly - here I come!!!