Friday, March 20, 2009

Half of the Story

Since being first cast as Gladys in The Best Christmas Pageant Ever in September, 2006, Scarlett has not gone more than a month or so without a show -- her longest stretch was one free summer (this past one).

Those youthful thespian jowls showed no sign of sagging -- until yesterday morning when Complete Psychological Collapse descended upon the entire household.  Its origins, of course, could be found in Scarlett.

The Matron had a vague recollection of a casual conversation, weeks earlier, in which she and Scarlett agreed that Scarlett could, upon ocassion, sleep in and go to school, later.    The Matron didn'tclarify what this meant to Scarlett.  

So yesterday, when she donned just two layers of clothing for her daily run (go spring!  she knows you're trying!) at 8:30 am, she assumed that Scarlett's 'sleeping in' was over.   School starts at 9:10 and to the Matronly mind, there was no way that Scarlett shouldn't be there.

Imagine the Matronly discontent to return home at 9:10 to discover Scarlett sound asleep!  Imagine further, upgraded degree of Matronly distress when Scarlett not only REFUSED to get up, she glued herself to the bed and wept - of exhaustion, malaise, disorientation, rebel tummy, migrating head pain, and a strange taste on the back of her tongue. 

Wait!  The Matron pulls out every woman's right to change her mind.  She needs to disrupt this linnear narrative to put this episode into context.  Ever since starting Ramona rehearsals on Tuesday, Scarlett has been sort of droopy.  She's commented on the enormous amount of lines and blocking.  She's pointed to the events that Ramona performances mean she will miss:  school fun fair, a birthday party, invitation for a weekend away.

Even as she's been instantly, deeply committed -- putting in contacts so she can "start living in character," pledging to be off book within a week, and bounding out of rehearsals with joy -- even in the midst of that regular attitude the Matron has come to expect (and take for granted), there's been a backdrop of unease that has troubled and surprised the Matron.

So the Matron finally got her daughter off to school and considered Scarlett's 

Tuesday-Friday:  7:30 up for school  *   9:10 school  *  3:40 end school/pick up for drive to Children's Theatre  *  4:30-9:30 rehearsal   9:30-10  car pool home  *  10-11   Cool Down for the hyper -energized  *  11 to 11:30 finally fall asleep.

Saturday:  11-8 rehearsal
Sunday      12-5 rehearsal  including Easter

This goes until April 15 when Tech Week starts and the schedule goes from 11 am - 11 pm with one two hour break at 4, for 5 days and then three days of 12 - 9 pm (more tech and Previews).  

Then Scarlett does 84 shows.  The run ends June 7.

Bring on the vitamin C, the TLC, and an invitation/suggestion from the Mama?  Let's take the summer off.


Initial comments reflected yesterday's version of this tale, which has been tailored.  


Anonymous said...

Me no speak your language.


I know you live in Minnesota and everything I hear about it is cool and progressive, but your conversation with the teacher does not compute. Maybe Oklahoma only has narrow minded, hard assed teachers, but I seriously cannot compute this degree of flexibility. We homeschooled for a while because the concern for rules over kids drove us crazy. I've never even heard of half-schooling, and the notion that a school would allow it truly knocks my socks off.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I'm pretty amazed that a public school would be that accommodating. Good luck with it.

Daisy said...

Is the part-time attendance legal? It sounds like the right choice for Scarlett, but whenever I get kids who are habitually tardy, we're required by law to file a truancy plan. The exception to that is kids with part-time home school for health reasons.

Heather said...

Wow. I'm floored. That's great for Scarlett but I'm absolutely floored that a public school would be so accommodating. I think the kids in theater around here generally go to the special art school in town.

thefirecat said...

Does she seriously go to a public school? Are these teachers on the same planet as the rest of the world? If not, can we move there WITH them??

Jason, as himself said...

84 shows? Wowza.

This teacher sounds amazing. So practical, and yes, wise.

I bet she'll be Scarlett's favorite forever.

Minnesota Matron said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Oh Matron! Do tell! Which Congressman?

(And might I say . . my god I think you would have been miserable in Oklahoma.)

Anonymous said...

Scarlett's best interests are clearly running her teacher's decisions. Bring that wise educator Starbuck's best whenever you can. Punctuate that with gift certificates to relaxing restaurants and a visit to the spa. Seriously.

Daisy said...

I'm glad to hear it's all above board and works well for Scarlett. No wonder she wants to do the extra work; this teacher sounds so inspiring!

Minnesota Matron said...

Mickey Edwards!

Minnesota Matron said...

The Matron removed Scarlett's school's response to the theater schedule because she didn't want other thespians comparing and challenging her good (and legitimate) fortune to live in a school district that turned out to be flexible and fair :-). And yes, that child will be sitting in her desk taking MCAs instead of being at the first hour of tech week :-).

Anonymous said...

Speaking as one of Scarlett's teachers (not even the one the Matron described earlier)...she handles everything that is thrown at her with thought, determination, and skill. Although she misses some classes, her work is complete, on time, and high level. She makes it look easy! She cares tremendously about her work on top of it. So very capable...I am glad that she can follow her passions. She knows what she wants...I know some adults who aren't as lucky. How couldn't we honor Scarlett?!

Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

Once again, I must say, "Brava!" To Scarlett, yes, but also a hearty one for the Matron.