This week ITSAZOO is heading to Victoria to perform Death of a Clown at the Phoenix Theatre at UVic. Most of us involved in the show went to UVic for our BFAs (Seb, Colby, Eugene, Kyle, Mere, Chris A and W, Cam and Me). Being presented by UVic allows us to be in a bigger theatre with a bigger house with more tech time and tech capabilities than we can afford on our own at this stage in the game. It’s an awesome opportunity.
It’s going to be odd to return to the place that we all met and began pursuing our artistic dreams as young chaps. It’s made me think back to those roller coaster times. One of my most vivid memories was being a dresser in the first semester of my first year. I was one of 6 first year female dressers working on The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui. I was so excited to be working on a play – a real play in a real theatre with 4th year actors! There were at least 20 actors in the show and every night be washed all of their clothes, ironed all of their shirts, helped them dress, put on their makeup and do their quick changes. In print it doesn’t sound like fun but I was in heaven. On the first preview I stood backstage in a dark quick change station and listened as the show began. I was a part of a team that was creating this awesome work of art – little me! I was beyond thrilled. I wanted to do nothing but create theatre for the rest of my life.
Now, 8 years later, I still can’t stop creating theatre and I am lucky enough to be a part of an amazing creative team. Sometimes it’s hard, really hard. Resources are scarce, and there’s never enough time or money and sometimes you pour your heart in to something and it flops. Sometimes I want to give up – we all do. When I feel that way I think about the 18-year-old Chelsea standing in the back of the Bishop Theatre grinning, eyes filled with tears because I got to be a part of the magic.
I can’t wait to be 26-year-old Chelsea sitting in the audience of the Bishop watching as my work of art, created with my remarkable team, goes up on the stage where it all began for us.