Our 2015 Listen To Your Mother Baltimore show wrapped on Saturday, May 9, 2015 and I still don’t have the words to express exactly what that means. I believe in this project with all my heart and soul. In 2014 for our inaugral season, we were terrified that no-one would audition. They did! We were nervous that no-one would attend. We almost sold old! Oh those stories!! The cast from 2014 will always be our first “babies”. This year, we prayed that we wouldn’t have the “sophomore jinx”. Kind of like a one hit wonder?
The moment we began the audition process, we know our fears were ridiculous and that our biggest challenge this year would be narrowing the cast to 13. The 13 women who bravely wrote, auditioned, rehearsed, and told their authentic stories on Saturday, have carved out a permanent place in our hearts. We had wondered aloud if we’d be able to love the 2nd cast as much as we loved the 1st cast, and answer is a resounding YES!! We love them in different ways, with that LTYM love unifying us forever. Our 2nd cast was joined but for the simple fact that they were cast in the show together. Yet, over the last 8 weeks, they have become a family of sorts. Connected and bonded because of their vulnerability and desire to show the inner cores of who they are.
We had a cast sister hand braid these beautiful bracelets for everyone to wear on show day. This picture makes me tear up every time I see it! We are already planning our “reunion” event for this summer. It’s amazing when a group of seemingly different women, come together to create something magical. Baltimore as a city has been deeply segregated by class and race for more years that I’ve been alive. Yet, our cast was able to cut through those layers to honor each other as unique people and have their voice respected simply because they chose to raise it. Each story on its own is a statement, but woven together into the perfect quilt of laughs, head nods, tears and applause, these stories take on an almost ethereal beauty. Writing and telling my own story has been a large part of my healing process following the death of my husband. I know unequivocally that this project has also been an integral part.
Without these women and their stories, there would be no show. As important as the stories are, the nuts and bolts behind the scene must be handled. Listen To Your Mother Baltimore would not be possible without our wonderful local sponsors – Everclear Video Productions, Jen Snyder Photography, Bodyguards Plus, and DJ Miss Tiff Entertainment. We are grateful for their continued support!
In addition to our sponsors, our “team” of family and friends rallies to support Arlene and I during this time of year. My mother, pictured in red above, is the calm and powerful wind beneath both our wings. Arlene lost her dear mother five and a half years ago, and my mother has absorbed her into our nest. She gives us guidance and support to immerse ourselves into this project for months, while also being an amazing grandma to my 6 year old. Although we don’t always listen to my mother, she knows how much we value her perspective. And I think we probably listen about 75% of the time!
The videos from our show, along with the other 38 shows across the country will be released this summer. In the meantime, take a peek at the Baltimore Sun article about our show. A very hearty thank you to Mary McCauley for attending the show, interviewing me and featuring the show in the Sunday paper on Mother’s Day. You should also take a look at this super cool ABC News feature that was filmed in April while several of the Listen To Your Mother: What She Said Then, What We’re Saying Now Anthology were in New York for the book release.
I’m a teensy bit biased, but I’ve just gotta say – you missed one heck of a show!! Don’t make that same mistake next year, m’kay?