Tony and Maria in West Side Story

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If you’ve read my blog for a while you may know this little tidbit about me: I was a voice major in college and spent a few years doing regional and dinner theater after I graduated.

My favorite role of all time was Maria in West Side Story. It was my senior year in college, and I wanted the part of the lead, Maria, bad. B.A.D. The auditions lasted throughout the weekend, and I was hopeful and nervous and thrilled when the cast list came out and I got the role!

Tony and Maria in West Side Story 28 years ago and yet such an important milestone that  I remember like it was yesterday.

Tony and Maria in West Side Story

A few weeks ago I was contacted by my friend Mark Janicello, who played Tony opposite me all those years ago (and whom I haven’t seen since 1984).  He now lives in the Netherlands and is a successful singer, actor, performer, artist and gallery owner.  He was coming to the states for work and was giving a concert in the area. Would I want to sing with him again?

Since the theme of my life lately seems to be stretching outside my comfort zone, I said yes. On Tuesday night I got to perform with my Tony, singing Tonight from West Side Story.

28 years ago and today.

It was wonderful to rediscover that piece of me, hidden with time but still surviving, that loves to connect with an audience and live in that moment as someone else.

No longer 22 but loving life even more now, I’m grateful for all God’s many blessings through the years. Thank you, Mark, for graciously asking me to sing. Let’s do it again in another 28 years!

You can read about my love of theater through my husband’s surprise theater wall project.

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  1. Sandra @Beneath this Roof, Within these Walls says:

    Congratulations!! How wonderful for you, and for the people so fortunate as to be able to attend. If I had been blessed with a talent, I would have loved to sing. Sadly, I can not. I am probably the only mommy who has ever had babies that would say “mommy, please don’t sing”!! But I love music.
    Good for you, stepping outside your comfort zone, stretching, reaching for all you can be. It is the only way we grow!!!

    • Sandra, you are such an encourager 🙂 Thank you for making time to comment. Still being stretched by both life and God! Have a blessed day!

  2. Oooo! I just got chills! That is SO fun! Good for you.

    • Thanks, Kim, for visiting with me today. I love connecting with my readers, especially other moms (and adoptive ones, too). Have a blessed day!

  3. Your post just gave me a boost of inspiration. I have to do something today that is out of my comfort zone and have been nervous all day (well more like week) about it. Reading your post has me excited to face stretching those boundaries. Thanks again!

    • Thank you so much, Ashley, for commenting. It is such a new season of life for me, and I appreciate your taking the time to share it with me! Good luck with your “stretch!”

  4. YAY Marty!!!! I’m so proud of you!! Having been a musician also, all my life, I can honestly say that music is something that’s a part of us that will never go away. We may push it to the back while we’re raising our families or getting caught up in daily life…but it’s always there, waiting to be awakened. Didn’t it feel just incredible to wake that sucker up?!? I haven’t sang in front of a big audience in years, but I love to get some musician friends of mine together once a year or so, and we just sit in my living room and play our guitars and sing until we go hoarse. This may be a little too graphic, but we sing in 3, 4 or 5 part harmonies (depending on how many of us there are at that moment) and when you hit it JUST right, we have a little phrase we coined and call it having a harmonygasm! Haha! You have to just sit there for a second and revel in the incredible sounds you just made together, and know what a special gift you’ve been given. I love vocals!!

    Thanks for stopping by the blog and entering the contest and all your sweet comments lately! I’ve been a horrible blogger buddy, but promise to make it better soon. I’ve actually been working on going through the list you wrote about the 18 must read blog posts. I promise to start visiting/stalking regularly again super soon!!!!!

    Hugs, Amy E.

    • Amy, I didn’t know you were a musician, too! I’ve been singing in church over the years and directing choirs but this was purely for fun and old times. I totally get it about the harmonies and getting the blend just right.

      You’re not a bad buddy, just busy. Thank you for taking the time to comment, and good luck reading all those posts! Great info but very time consuming. Blessings, my friend!

  5. How fun Marty! I so wish I could sing. I’d definitely hop up on stages and say people, listen to this!! Glad you got to relive this memory. How fun!

    • It was fun! I still sing at church and at funerals, etc., but this was just something out of the ordinary. Hope you and the family are doing well!

  6. How Fun! I, too, was very involved in band, choir, and musical theater through Jr. and Sr. High. Now . . . I just live it through my kids (7 of the older 8 have already performed in high school musicals). So glad you had the opportunity.

    Laurel 🙂

    • Laurel, we have such similar backgrounds and stories (except that you have way more kids :-). We are definitely getting to a new season of life, aren’t we? Much work left to do in parenting our adult kids and letting go as well. It’s tough stuff. Hope you’re still enjoying the benefits of your vacation!

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