By Evie King, Duke/Soldier/Lodovico in Othello
I move around. A lot.
I love it, but that means every time I move somewhere, I have to decide how and where I want to get involved. When we moved to Fayetteville, I found a vibrant theater community, and I knew right away that I wanted to start auditioning. Right now Facebook has a banner that says “Theatre Inspires,” and while that is true, a more relevant banner for me would say “Theatre Connects.”
What I love about working with Sweet Tea Shakespeare is the interesting tapestry of people who weave together a performance. During Othello, I work beside educators, students, business professionals, volunteers, and many other leaders connected to the Fayetteville community in a different way. Some have lived here their entire lives, others are transient, and many chose to move here and make Fayetteville their home. During the day, we’re all doing something completely different, but at night our passion for putting on a performance brings us together. We are actors, musicians, stage managers, directors, painters, builders, and much more. From the moment I first walked into a STS workshop, I felt welcomed and my talents put to good use.
Audience interaction at Sweet Tea shows also connects me with the local community. Before the performance I ask audience members if they want a photo with the the Golden Frame of Happiness. I love learning about where they’re from, how they heard about STS, or if they have seen a Shakespeare show before. We might not have much in common, but for those brief moments, theater connects us. With each interaction, I discover more about this city and it becomes less like a temporary living space and more like a home.
If you want to get to know your community and connect with different people, come to the theatre! You might come as a guest, but you’ll leave as a friend, all while watching a quality show.