Overcoming Our Fears

Checking out our dance moves

Posted by Danny

I’m really proud of the girls and actually I’m proud of me too!

Theatre in the Park here in Raleigh does an incredible rendition of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.  Ira David Wood is Scrooge and has performed his magic at Memorial Auditorium for 37 years.

About 25 years ago, Lisa’s family was in the play.  Actually, she would tell you that everyone in the family was in the play except her.  I think she ended up helping in the orchestra pit.  Jesse was Tiny Tim as a child, no surprise there.

And about five years ago, Lisa, Jesse and DJ tried out again and enjoyed a two season run.  I was home with the other two kids for the fifty nights of rehearsals and performance!

This year, we all decided we would put our fears behind us and tryout as a family.  I am trying to work to give the girls experiences that Lisa would have encouraged.  This was totally her.

I’ll have to admit, it was a little nerve-racking.

We all picked out our songs and began the process of in home rehearsals.  At Aunt Sallie’s house last week, we all sang our solos with Nana tickling the ivories.

Tonight before we headed to our tryout, Jesse sat the crowd down.

“It’s ok to be a little nervous” he told us, “but they want to know how you handle the situation.  If you mess up, don’t freak out, just collect yourself and ask to start over again.”

Two family members cried during evening rehearsals in the living room.  That was not a good sign.  But after they cracked on me for my pathetic melody-only accompaniment, the mood lightened.  His next tact was to have us all, in unison, sing our individual solos at the top of our voices on the way to the theatre.  If you were standing on Dixie Trail at 8:30 tonight, you might have heard a concoction of I Saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus, Sentimental Man fromWicked, Zip-A-Dee-Dee-Dah, It’s Almost Like Being in Love, and a melody from Disney’s Little Mermaid.  I didn’t sound very good, but it did ease the tension.

Once there, I went first.  I haven’t sung alone in front of anyone since I was in a couple of plays in high school.  I did fine but I sounded a lot better in the shower.  It was not my best shot. 

Stephanie knocked it out of the park as did DJ.  And of course, Jesse had no issues – he just hammed it right up. 

The tears started for Michelle as the rest of us performed; simply nerves.  But with the help of a friend, she pulled herself together and belted outZip-A-Dee like a champ.  She has an incredible voice.  She just needs to be put in these uncomfortable situations on a more frequent basis!

Early on in discussing the tryouts, we decided that we needed to be an all or nothing group.  I just feel like right now we need activities that bring us together and having  a piece of the family out for that many rehearsals would be tough.  I know it will be difficult for them to put the entire family in the production, so our hard work might have been for naught.

But, I’ll have to say that I was really proud that we were able to put our fears behind us and tackle something new.  The experience was a fun thing for us to conquer as a family.  And who knows, one day you might see us appearing in The Sound of Music as the von Trapp Family singers.  We got talent!

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  1. Mel ham

     /  September 19, 2011

    Some how Jessie’s timing is impeccable and he always knows the right thing to say, do or suggest. I don’t know who to credit with this…is it his genes (could be I see so much of Lisa in him), life experiences, living under the four walls of the tanner household, love(that big love he has) or combination of it all. I have wondered sometimes when I see the actions that are so “Lisa” if we all aren’t just puppets that in difficult times her spirit is pulling our strings…I know this for sure…at the end of the day for all of us…if we could know that we had just a bit of the influences Lisa had on our lives…that we leave that much impact on everyone we know…that the warmth of our love still lingers…We all would say..I lived my life well…that was my purpose. This is Lisa’s “it’s a wonderful life”…She left a legacy of love, grit, and a it’s gonna be alright…Never doubt she is with you all the time…There are times that I have thoughts or aggrevation that I might even want to verbally criticize or mouth off…I know her spirit can hear me or even see me in action. But in true Lisa fashion she would give me a break but expect me to dig in and not let something beat me.

  2. Homestead Ramblings

     /  September 19, 2011

    Way to go, kind Sir, I’m proud of you all!

  3. Sarah LF

     /  September 19, 2011

    I’m proud of y’all! Any word on casting???

  4. Helen LaVere

     /  September 19, 2011

    If you don’t make the cut, start your own production! I’d buy tickets! 🙂

  5. Pretty cool!

  6. Aunt Susan

     /  September 20, 2011

    YOU HAD BETTER CALL ME IF YOU GUYS MAKE IT, and you should if Ira David has any sense. I can’t wait to buy my multiple sets of tickets!


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