Two and a half weeks away and just 13 performances and my Cats experience was over. Short and sweet and just enough knee pain.
I have to say performing in the show was every bit of magic I remembered minus the South African audience, which did make a difference. Although any audience gives me a buzz, when I did the show last time, on home turf, it was so exciting because I never knew who might be watching so it gave me that bit of extra energy each time. I was reminded of this when my husband and his business partner came to watch on our last matinée. I probably over-performed but it was fun knowing that there were at least one set of eyes on me at all times. What can I say, performers love attention 🙂
Another downside to my brief stay was not having enough time to truly bond with the cast. Many of them had toured with the show for a year and you could really see and feel the camaraderie on stage. From working on two international productions, I can say that theatre people, regardless of home country, are some of the craziest and friendliest in the world and I would have relished getting closer to this particular group of people. They were so welcoming and sweet and great with baby Ayla.
After the final show we were treated to a closing party at the Bellini Lounge, a casino bar with live music and burlesque-clad waitresses. The music was fantastic and we danced the night away to some great classics and golden oldies. My feet hated me but I pushed through, I mean, how often do moms get to let their hair down!
While the rest of the cast was due to continue to Korea, I had opted out of the tour, which had many of them asking what my plans were for when I got home. It was then that I could finally reveal to the cast the news I had kept secret. The fact that I was 14 weeks pregnant!
The reaction of the cast members was overall shock (“OMG I lifted you pregnant!”) …followed by congratulations. So I guess it was the right decision not to tell them about it during the contract but it was awesome to finally share the news.
I actually knew about my pregnancy before I left South Africa. After taking the necessary contractual precautions I went ahead with the contract because I had danced while pregnant before and the three-week commitment was short enough for me to feel comfortable with the physical demands of the show. And it was all fine. I saw a gyne in Macao for the crucial 12-week scan where they do an ultrasound and take blood to rule out certain complications and in fact, I felt less of the awful morning sickness and fatigue while away than when I was at home. I think being busy and having something big to keep my mind occupied were the best pregnancy blues busters ever.
So what is next for me? As I am writing this I am 16 weeks along and already showing slightly, so I guess any big dance contracts are out of the question. Teaching is on the cards and I have joined forces with some exciting people but actually I am thinking about doing something completely different. Maybe it will be choreographing, maybe a 9-5, maybe moving to China with my husband. I don’t know yet but what I would like to do is fill in the blanks on this blog. All those adventures I had while traveling and touring Asia with Phantom of the Opera, those memories need to be captured before I forget about them completely.
Well its goodbye to Cats, maybe forever, maybe just for now. I am so grateful I got to do it again and add to my fond memories, my friends list and my bank account. So until next time, here’s to an exciting 2015, filled with adventure, change and a healthy dose of uncertainty.