Tonight is the big night…
You’re climbing the stairs. You glance at your ticket.
Balcony. Section 3 Row C. Seat 16.
You have reached your row; now you have to fight to get to your seat. For every audience member, getting to your seat is a battle, especially when its a sold out show.
There are many veterans on this battle field. They have made it to their seats. They gloat as if they are wearing purple hearts; you don’t know what they went through to get here. Now its your turn. This is the final stretch to get to your seat. This moment is a performance in and of itself. All eyes are on you. The modern dance of avoiding strangers feet, hoping to not stub a toe and cause a ruckus.
Step. Step. Whoops – “I’m sorry!!” Step. Leap – Step. Step. A few more. ”Pardon me!” Step. Step. One more. Step.
Ah. That sigh of relief. You made it.
Here it is.
Your seat, and it feels like a victory in and of itself. The faded red velvet upholstery feels like a throne… your throne, for you and you alone, are a King for tonight.
You look around.
This is your view for the duration of this show. Was it what you expected? Who is seated around you? Are there any pretty girls in the audience tonight?
Envy creeps in. No matter where you are seated, you always want that other seat, even if you are in the front row.
You accept your fate for this night only, but promise yourself that next time will be different.
Accept your throne, King of the Audience.
The performers are performing for you and only you, right? (You’d like to think so)
You didn’t bring a date.
You felt like a renegade, deciding to go alone. You’ve only done this a few times. But the truth is you really want to see this performance, you want to see this moment in time sooooo badly that you don’t want to be bothered by social trivialities.
You are full of thoughts, thinking to yourself. There is something about the energy of hundreds, maybe thousands of strangers thinking around you. As if on a majestic drug high your ideas seem better than usual. You think manic, lofty ideas. You hope to remember all of these amazing ideas after the show.
Everyone is full of mindless chatter – meaningless chatter that will never be remembered again. Mumbling that is indecipherable. The Tower of Bable has been called from the depths of antiquity; this is part of the history of performance. You try to play a little game with yourself to be a sleuth and find out how many conversations you can piece together. You get bored after 2 or 3.
You look at your watch - And then -
- something happens -
All at once, the energy shifts in the theatre. No one knows exactly how it started. Perhaps a game of Telephone was exchanged from the orchestra to the lovely lady sitting in Row A, Seat 53.
You don’t need to wait for the Telephone to reach you. The moment has happened. It’s about to happen.
This is the moment you have been waiting for. You know what time it is…
The music is about to begin….but not quite…
It is that moment, that quiet moment that begins right in the middle of someone’s momentarily important conversation …and right before the musicians pick up their instruments and begin. That perfect moment in between.
The audience knows that the performance is about to begin, but it hasn’t happened yet.
Time is literally suspended in a frozen moment in time. In fact, this moment actually does not exist in time. Time literally pauses for a moment on the playback button of Life. This is the one grain of sand suspended in the hourglass of infinity. This is the moment that happened right before the Big Bang, millions of years ago.
All great performers know to respect this moment.
By now you are sitting on the edge of your seat.
Simultaneously you want to hold on to this moment forever and want it to be over and have the music begin.
You can’t tell the future…you don’t know what is about to happen. You don’t know if this is going to be the best show of your life, or the worst show that you will complain about to friends for the next 10 years. You must submit to this moment, the moment when Everything Is About to Begin.
You can hear a few people gasp with anticipation… they are asking themselves… is this the moment? Is the show about to begin?
…. not yet
…. not yet
…. not yet …. wait something is happening -
….. Ladies and Gentlemen we have reached the apex of suspended time.
Please fasten your seat belts and return your trays to their upright position. This is the moment when you get to make a wish. God – The Universe – whatever you’re calling it these days – has given YOU this moment to be present at this performance. This moment suspended in time feels so magical and alive…it feels even more energetic than the music itself.
Close your eyes. Hold your breath. And make a wish…
….oh yes oh yes the moment is still here…. hold on….not yet
….it’s almost here…the show is just about to begin…
…oh it’s fading…..you can feel it…you try to grasp onto the moment but you can’t…it’s slipping away…
The musicians have lifted their instruments….