By Washington Revels
May 9, 2021
In annual productions like The Christmas Revels and May Revels, “Stage Families” are an important part of the experience for both performers and audience members. For viewers, these families add to the creation of an onstage village, sharing in the moments, reacting together as the audience does — and as real family might. For the performers, being part of a Stage Family, with children, parents, and grandparents, creates a real community onstage and off.
To mark Mother’s Day 2021, Revelers wrote in to share their experiences, both as Stage Mothers and as Stage Children. Their posts explain why the stage relationship is so meaningful. Follow us throughout the day on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for photos and stories from these Revelers.
To start, here is Reveler and Christmas Revels Children’s Chorus Music Director Kat Toton, who explains the trust that the role of “Stage Mother” entails:
To be chosen as a Revels Stage Mom is very special position! You are being entrusted with a child’s experience to help make it the most positive memory you can. The biological parents trust you to take care of their child, the show directors trust you to help the child feel special and included in a real family — because it IS real. The production might only last a season, several big rehearsals and 9 performances — but those memories last a lifetime! A connection forms that is long cherished by both of you, and when the show is over, that ribbon stick still ties you together. The next time you see each other (and perhaps even years later) you still smile and hug when you see each other and say “Son!” or “Mom!” There are little inside jokes and activities which you bring out and cherish: “Remember when we did…?” I still remember my first stage son always checking and reminding me to fix my collar. The photos you take, the laughs and happy smiles you share, the bright shining eyes when you meet each other for the very first time, the sweetly proud moments you have watching your stage child perform in their set, putting your hand on their shoulder to draw them in for quiet family songs… ah yes, this is some of the best stuff in Revels life. What a precious gift, and a tender responsibility! Thank you, Roberta and the Revels Kids’ Team, for the years when I have been so blessed.
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