What did I get myself into? :)

Trip Start Jul 09, 2009
Trip End Dec 12, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Colorado
Thursday, July 16, 2009

I know that this title may be misleading but it really isn't, I promise :) 

I have 3 days to catch you up on! I'll try to summarize as best as possible but, for those of you know my writing style, it's not my forte :) I like to elaborate and incorporate as much detail as possible :)

Tuesday, July 14 - Audition/Module Day!

We were put into small groups on this day and went through 5 different stations: vocal, dance, costume, technical and public speaking. 3 of the 5 (vocal, dance and public speaking) were audition stations. The UWP staff called them "modules" but we knew what they really meant :)

My group consisted of 2 girls from China and 1 girl each from California, Arkansas, Colorado, and Arizona. And me, of course! First, we went to a technical module. The tech staff asked us about our technical experience (thanks to the Concordia Theatre Program, I had the most!) and discussed basic safety procedures. Next was public speaking, my favorite! We were given 3 excerpts from our UWP show and were given 3-4 minutes to get to know one. 2 of the excerpts are to be spoken during a song in the show. The other was an excerpt from the only acting part in the show of a nosy, gossip columnist from New York. Even though I didn't choose to concentrate on the acting lines, the producer asked me to read them! Who knows! :) 

Next was the dance module. This was more difficult for me because I haven't taken dance lessons in years and am not very technically sound. A lot of the dance moves were very technical and difficult for me to master in a short time.

After lunch was the vocal module, the one that I had been waiting for! I was very happy with how I sang and the girls in my group gave me compliments afterwards which gave me confidence. We'll see how that goes! :) The last module of the day was the costume module. My costume worked perfectly - My mom and I bought it at Herberger's. Yay for clearance sections and coupons!

Wednesday, July 15 - Workout and Movement Day!

This day was awesome! After a brief educational session about cultural immersion using the Iceberg Simulation (thanks Hank Tkachuk! I was the only one that knew it beforehand!), we participated in a 2-hour cast fitness day. Our instructor, Erica, is a trained "Zoomba" instructor. Zoomba is a new type of fitness based on salsa dancing and latin movement. The creator wanted people to have a great time working out without realizing that they were working out. And what a workout we had! Holy cow! Without air conditioning, I was dripping by the end of the 2-hour session but I've never felt better!

Later in the day, we started working on full cast vocals and full cast movement. The dances are great and so much fun to perform. I caught on easily and have started to teach Gabi and Dani the dances! They love to dance!

Thursday, July 16 - Where the "What Did I Get Myself Into" Comes Into Play...

This morning we had an educational session about what UWP can do for a profile and how to use it as a resume builder. I got some great tips :) I can't wait to show future employers how cultured I am!

We had 2 hours of full cast vocals today. Singing in a choir has always been fun for me and I caught on easily to the specific parts. Many of the girls in the alto section (the section in which I sing) have been asking me to help them with the songs which is such so uplifting for me :)

One of the music directors, Linda, has been asking some of us to sing for her in small groups. Today it was my turn! I sang some solo parts, as did 3 other girls. At the very end, she asked me how comfortable I was singing in Spanish! When we go to Mexico, we will sing some of our songs in Spanish.

Oh, did I mention that our crowd in Leon, Mexico is often more than 20,000 people?

No, I'm not nervous at all............

After lunch, the musical director, Michael, asked those of us who can play an instrument to meet with him. Out of a cast of 75 people, only 8 showed up. 3 of the 8 are piano players and I am one of the them. Now, I had assumed that UWP had its own band and that if we wanted to play a song, we'd be able to. Well, UWP has a band...

It's us.

So now, I'm also a piano player in the UWP Band. Myself and 2 other girls will be dividing the piano music between ourselves. In the meantime, we'll be learning all of the songs and dances. 

As if I couldn't get any busier, I was informed that I might be playing that character part that I mentioned earlier in this entry or will have a speaking part.

Well, I know that I wouldn't have been satisfied unless I dabbled in everything during my run with Up With People. I just had no idea that it'd be this extensive!

Hopefully I can handle this added new responsibility. This month just got a whole lot busier! :) The motto of UWP is "Sleep later". 

I can definitely attest to that!

If you have iTunes and would like a purchase an upbeat, uplifting song, look up "Shine' by Laura Izibor. It was the song of the week this week and it's wonderful :)


P.S. The pictures that I uploaded are of our rehearsal hall in Denver (The Sherman Center), and of an outdoor concert that Doug, Gabi, Dani, Helen and I went to this evening. It was beautiful evening with great music. You'll also see that I uploaded a picture of Helen :)
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