I had the honour of being invited to Red Sandcastle Theatre last night to attend the one night only performance of SoulOTheatre’s recent workshop participants, who embarked on a 10-week journey to mine their souls and life stories to create their own one-person show and perform it in front of an audience. And what a remarkable, inspiring evening it was! Since it was an invited audience event and a class finale performance, I’m not going to do the usual write-up post – but I did want to give a shout out to SoulOTheatre, Tracey Erin Smith and her students.
Director/teacher Tracey Erin Smith introduced us to seven brave, beautiful women – each going out onstage alone to tell us her soul story. Using music, stand-up comedy, spoken word, fairy tale storytelling and journal excerpts – and just getting out there, being real and talking to us – each performer took the audience on a journey filled with laughter, tears, playfulness, anger and forgiveness. All from different backgrounds and coming to the process with varying levels of performance experience, some didn’t think they could do it. Diving deep into yourself is a scary thing. Some even wanted to quit. But Tracey gently shepherded them back, and each found the courage and confidence to get on that stage and open up to us.
Present in the audience were three former students – Marco Bernardi, Terrence Bryant and DJ Edwards – who Tracey brought together to perform their pieces in the Toronto Fringe 2012 show SOULO – if you missed it, you can see my post on that performance here: https://lifewithmorecowbell.wordpress.com/2012/07/15/a-magical-joyful-celebration-of-souls-soulo/
On a personal note – several years ago, I took Tracey’s weekend intensive workshop and had a blast. It pushed me and my fellow students to explore, dig deep – and have the confidence to go into unfamiliar and scary territory in a safe, supportive and fun environment.
Tracey believes that everyone has a story to tell. And she asks us: What’s yours?
Check out SoulOTheatre sometime – it’ll do you good.