I am currently what is known as a 'musical theatre widow'.
My girlfriend is one of the leads in the upcoming Tauranga Musical Theatre (TMT) production of Wicked.
I'm a Wicked Widow.
We've all been to musicals before, right. And we've all thought: 'wow this is awesome and they've clearly put a lot of work in here'.
But I've never been in a situation to see from the literal wings actually how MUCH work goes in to something like this.
She's rehearsing literally every night during the week and a full day on Sunday. She's also a student and working a full day on Saturday.
I barely see her. She's on billboards all over town and when she comes home she talks about the show, the people in it, what she's currently working on for it ... And then she sings it. And then we run lines.
I'm basically Clarke Gayford. But less talented. And not great at being arm candy at political events. And I'm not looking after a baby.
As a byproduct of this barrage of Wicked I think I would make a great Wicked understudy. Any of the characters. I've impersonated them all at this stage.
In all seriousness it's actually quite refreshing for me. I'm a busy person (aren't we all).
I've spent years of my life before trying to explain away my busyness/passions to those close to me. I've made excuses for it. I've tried to cut back on things to make others happy and give them more of my time. I've felt guilty for being busy and doing the things I love to do.
Work is a lifestyle choice for me and I'm fine with that. It's others that haven't been.
So it's refreshing to have someone in my life who is actually just the same. We have a mutual busyness understanding that doesn't even need to be discussed. Score!
Sidenote: This should be an option you have to tick when on dating apps now: 'busy as hell and not wanting to change that any time soon'? Tick. You also then have the whole first date to humble brag to each other about your busy life and how great/'hard' it is (whatever mate, you love it)!
The cast and crew who are working on TMT's Wicked are just legends. They are all giving their time, effort, vocal cords, dancing prowess, musical ability and SOUL to something they love. It's pretty inspiring to see people follow their passions.
Also, can you actually imagine what it would be like to stand on a stage and sing, as a character that everyone is expecting you to nail, in front of hundreds of people every night for two weeks? That's like the definition of oops-I've-let-out-some-wee frightening!
The least you can do is go and see their effort come to fruition at Baycourt Theatre, September 14-28.
Apart from it being one of the best shows Tauranga has seen in years, we can hang out when you come along too. I'm seeing it more times than an uncultured man in his 30s cares to mention. I'm never too busy to support. It's what Clarke would do. Can't have him showing me up now can I.
Though he would bring the baby.
Which is hard to beat.
Does anyone have a spare baby? (Asking for a friend.)
— Will Johnston is the local 9am-3pm host for The Hits Bay of Plenty 95FM. He's also a celebrant and MC. Follow Will on Instagram on @radiowill.