• Mama PhD

    Mothers attempting to balance parenthood and academics.


Root, Root, Root for the House Team

The joy of activities.


September 14, 2014

I recently auditioned for, and got a place on, a musical improv house team. This was a big deal for me, and news of it reached many friends, a number of whom were thrilled for me even though they had no idea what it means. (Some improv clubs assemble teams that "belong" to the club and perform there on a regular basis.) One friend who is more athletically than comedically oriented congratulated me for "making the home team."

I thought of the improv truism "mistakes are gifts." As I have recorded here, I started singing and acting again in preparation for dealing with the empty nest, and then sort of fell into improv and then musical improv. The classes and shows I have been involved with really have made up a second "home" as the first one shifts and grows smaller.

In addition to this house team, I am currently a member of 4 other teams. That sounds like a lot, but one is on hiatus at the moment because of scheduling issues, and one prefers to perform only a few times a year. Of my two active teams, one is a 12-week "sponsored" commitment (we were auditioned and cast, and appear regularly at a club, but we aren't a house team in that we have a limited run) that is drawing to a close, and the other is the musical 2prov act that rose from the ashes of my beloved indie team. My 2prov partner and I perform whenever we can, but he is in great demand as an improviser so we are down to once a month or so.

I love all of this. I don't fully understand why I love it so much, but I do. I love getting together with a bunch of really funny adults and pretending we are 7-year-olds playing make-believe in the backyard. I love it especially when the funny adults are also good singers and dancers, and express their silliness in this way as well.

What I don't love are the goodbyes, when the teams dissolve or take a break, or when we finish a show and don't know when the next one will happen. I look forward to practicing and performing regularly with this truly gifted group of people, to growing together as a team, and to feeling "at home" with them and in the environment.

Parents, of all people, know that nothing ever stays the same. But I'm grateful to have been chosen for an activity that I love, among people I want to grow with, and with at least the intention of stability, at least for a while.


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