They created an atmosphere of care and humor and openness and that started in March of 2020 when we flew there only to have the city close down. We started our pandemic together(before we even knew what it would become) and to be able to come back together, which I truly thought would never happen, was something very special to me.
I got to do shows that were silly, And silent And real and challenging in all the right ways. I got to teach artists that were brave, talented and brilliant while kind and giving geniuses translated for me(which CAN’T be easy, you’ve heard me talk). I got to plaaaay and teach alongside some truly exceptional humans with vastly different styles and actually got NERVOUS before an IMPROV show, I can’t remember the last time that happened. Cared for. I spent the train ride from Rome trying to write down and reflect so that I could hold onto the spirit of the festival without trying to duplicate it because that’s what my silly and human brain would try to do.
Until my plane LANDED in Rome I couldn’t believe(and couldn’t even say) it was happening. I was so filled with fear of disappointment, or failing expectations and I had voiced many times that what I felt the pandemic had taken from me was my ability to feel excitement. And then I landed. And I was surprised and inspired and present and honest. And I was also jetlagged and tired and sweaty and ME the whole time, messy monkey brain and all. And it was still magic. And I was there. And now I am excited. And the impact of getting to reconnect, the moments, will stay with me for quite a while(or rather pop back up in moments when I need it.)
OH! And Shout out to my sisters* for making me an aunt: my nieces and nephews always inspire me but they are the literal inspiration for the workshops I taught that I had no idea when I pitched two years ago would be exactly what I needed to bring me back to live improvisation and back into my body.
(*And also for being the best, kindest, strongest people I know who have always made me feel safe and loved and worthy no matter where I have been NBD.)
Would. Never. #welcomefest2022