Friday, January 27, 2012

Lincoln Center

Yesterday, in my 12 Fun Facts I mentioned a couple of things about Lincoln Center. I hadn't thought of those moments in years!

The first time I sang at Lincoln Center, during the spring semester in 1995 (sophomore year), I only got to sing during the dress rehearsal. We had practiced this major work (which I cannot remember now) and we were going to perform it for several nights... and my parents had tickets to see the performance.

On the Sunday before the dress rehearsal, I noticed a pimple in the middle of my forehead after waking from a very uncharacteristic nap. To a 19 year old, that can be devastating! I gentle squeezed it, but it would not go away. I also noticed a lump at the lower part of my neck. I took a shower and saw that I had a couple of red bumps in several other places, but I didn't think anything of it.

The next morning, my little forehead pimple had several friends. I tried to cover them up with foundation, but nothing helped. I wore my hair down to help hide my face, but in the bus on the way into the city, I felt little bumps coming up and "popping" all over. I went to a fellow classmate who was a mother of two and asked her if she knew what was going on.

Chicken pox!

During the rehearsal, the heat from the lights made more pox appear. I ended up having to take the next two weeks off to get rid of the pox and so I would not be contagious to anyone else (my first time missing class).

And wouldn't you know, while watching the news during my "quarantine" I saw that the chicken pox vaccine was approved by the FDA.

The second time we sang there, we had our dress rehearsal and performed in the same day. Everyone was assigned a seat, and we were told the "number" of the row were sitting in. I was smack in the middle of my row. Because of some necessary changes, an additional row was added to the front, but it was not considered row 1. It was an extension of row 1. I was sitting in row 2. However, because the row numbers were never made clear with the changes, I thought I was now in row 3.

After an afternoon of sight seeing in the city, we all went back, dressed (in the most unattractive, polyester black concert attire), and lined up. When row three was called, I went looking for my spot in the row. I could not find the person I was supposed to follow, but two oriental exchange students followed me. It was then that I realized that I was technically still seated in row 2 and went looking for row 2.

They had already gone on to the stage!

The students in the line ready to go out began yelling at me and these two poor girls that we were on the wrong side of the stage. Because our row number was 2, we had to come in on the other side. The girls and I began running back stage to get to the right door.

Running up a flight of stairs (in my long black dress), I tripped and fell right at the feet of an orchestra member. He was so kind and told us to relax. We weren't technically late because the orchestra wasn't out yet. He directed us to the door where we needed to be.

The entire choir of 250 people (almost the entire student population) was already standing in their places waiting to be seated. I found my row and told the guy on the end that we needed to get through. He began a chain message letting everyone in our row to step forward so we could walk in behind them unnoticed. With one leg on the floor and one knee on the seats, we began making our way to our seats. Halfway to our spots, one of the guys said, "Uh-oh."

"What?" I asked.

"The orchestra is in place. We are being seated."

And there we stood.

In the middle of the tenor section.

Trying to quietly make our way to our seats.

We finally made it after what seemed like forever, and that performance flew by. The piece we performed was 20 minutes long, but felt like five.  I was completely humiliated. Suzette, the girl known campus wide for following the rules, following directions, and never daring to do something out of the ordinary had blown it so publicly.

Thankfully that was my last time at Lincoln Center. Who knows what might have happened next!

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