I got the music bug when I was in 3rd grade and I saw the Broadway show musical Annie. That same year I auditioned to be an orphan on Broadway. For the couple weeks before the audition date, I memorized each and every song, over and over, and over and over some more and daydreaming about being chosen and touring around the United States. I had never auditioned for anything and there I was, all of 10 years old (I think),dressed in a church dress, with my long hair carefully combed, and standing on the stage of the Fisher Theater, standing in front of Broadway Producers while hundreds of little girls were dressed in dance clothes with stage moms by their side. Shy and nervous, I joined a group of about ten where they had us sing “Happy Birthday” instead of a song of our chose. I was heartbroken, but I made that song my own, as the judges on American Idol would say. And then we were taught some quick dance steps. I honestly couldn’t keep up as I never had dance lessons and they called the steps by name – “Do a sashay, then a chassis, a fallover, a pivot step, a ball change and finally end with a jazz split.” What? Needless to say, if you Google my name along with the Broadway show Annie, you won’t find me there. They said they liked my singing, told me to go get some dancing lessons and come back on the next audition. Afterwards, my parents signed me up for dance and I found my love of tap, jazz and my strong dislike for ballet. There would never be another Annie audition. I went on to do grade school plays, high school theater, college theatre and finally community theatre. It helped fulfill something within my blood that I longed for. Every time I see a Broadway show, I miss the stage. I actually ache for it. Last year when we saw Wicked, my husband saw the look in my eye, and was actually worried that I would get the ‘bug’. Doing theatre takes up so much time, and I am already limited with mine. However, when there are Broadway and singing type shows on television (or the movies), I gulp it up and regress to my stage days. The Glee Project did that for me.
She was a bubbly blonde who was consistent week after week, until they paired her up to kiss another girl and said it was convincing and they didn’t know how to write her into the series.
So as I watched last night’s episode, the rest of the contestants showed up to help with the last video and Shanna shined once again. It was hard not to miss her vibrant energy and her incredible talent.
I wish all of these kids all the best and just know that there is a musical future for each of them (honestly, they are better than most that audition on American Idol or the other singing competition shows). So I thank Ryan Murphy, the creator of the show for indulging my musical fix, and allowing me to drool over the choreographer and mentor Zack Woodlee. Hey, he’s a guy that isn’t afraid to cry! So even though my ability ruined it for me, I still was able to vicariously live through the show.