“Do You Have a Plan?” “I Don’t Even Have a ‘Pla’…”

By on 4 June, 2018 in Sarah Thornton with 0 Comments

By Melissa Tubbs

“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.” -Pablo Picasso

For many people, summer is the time of relaxation and vacation. The hard work and grueling schedule of the school year leads to the much-needed break to kick back, rejuvenate, and then prepare and plan for the next busy stretch. At the Cloverdale Playhouse, we are embracing the planning phase before the summer even gets underway. It is an interesting dance to be the butterfly in the cocoon while also trying to fly, but we are up to the challenge!

Our immediate future is our exciting journey into Middle Earth with our incredibly creative, imaginative production of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. We’ve been in the planning stages for this show for months already, and now we are kicking all of the plans into action! This will be a massive undertaking with a cast of twenty-eight actors (children and adults together), four very large puppets, and a world full of magical creatures and monsters that will be as grand as we can dream them.

Our summer will be busy, indeed! While we voyage through Middle Earth to slay dragons and recover fortunes, we are also thinking about the roads we hope to travel in the coming months and years. We are taking the words of Gloria Steinem to heart: “Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.” Part of the fun of working in the arts is that you get to dream, nay, must dream in order to create. Luckily, dreaming has always come easily to me! However, the business of creating also involves a lot of work behind the scenes. Sometimes, people forget just how much work, planning, and sacrificing goes into the final result. There are many moving parts, details that must be carefully and ardently set in place and looked after all along the path when in the business of turning dreams into realities.

That is the very heartbeat of our “Summer of Planning”! We are dreaming so vastly about all of the things that we hope to do and become as we continue toward the end of our seventh season and into our eighth and ninth and on and on. So, in order to see those long-term dreams come true, we have to lay a lot of groundwork. We have to research (one of my favorite things!) and learn and explore practical avenues to get us to where we want to go. We have to hypothesize! Organize! “Go, fight, win!” The “Summer of Planning” will include several prongs: strategizing sessions, artist summits, committee meetings, board meetings, late-night jam sessions, coffee dates, and lots and lots of listening as we explore the ideas and strengths of our community and see what can be gleaned. We look forward to finding our way into our future together! Let’s make a plan!

Sarah Walker Thornton is the Artistic Director of the Cloverdale Playhouse, who walks like a New Yorker and waves like an Alabama girl. She is a product of a Montgomery arts education, with several years of life in NYC thrown in for extra flavor.

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