In November I journeyed from Boston back to Chicago to run wardrobe for the extension of Silk Road Theatre Project’s production of Scorched by Wajdi Mouawad, directed by Dale Heinen. Being back in the theatre where I had started my freelance career brought mixed emotions – a sense of happiness upon my return, and the peculiar knowledge that I was now an outsider in what used to be my home.
I saw most of the show once from the front, on the night I drove in, from the booth. I grasped the storyline by a thread. The only actor I knew was Fawzia, who had worked with me on other projects. I had a lot of names and characters to learn and exactly 24-hours to do it. I jumped in.
Everyone who crossed my path on the project was amazing. The cast was kind, friendly, welcoming… everything I could ask for. They were patient with me about the laundry and ironing, and unruffled as I fumbled through buttoning and tieing them into their costumes. I saw lots of old friends, including Jamil and Malik, the artistic and executive directors of the company, Pastor Phil, pastor of the church that is Silk Road’s home, and Eric, the church’s choir director and a long-time supporter of theatre (in his church and elsewhere). Overall, a fun and exciting journey.