The big day had arrived!
Our dress rehearsal wasn’t until the afternoon so I met up with my friends one last time for breakfast. They had bought tickets to the concert but there would be no time for me to see them before or after the show. We once again had fun talking away over a nice breakfast.
I had time for a quick change at the hotel as our attire needed to be business casual for the dress rehearsal.
Everything was very organized. We had been assigned a bus according to the rows we were sitting in on the stage. So we when we got off of the bus, we were lined up and ready to go.
We arrived at Kennedy Center and had about 30 minutes before rehearsal to walk around and take some pictures. It is a huge building with more than one theater. There was nothing else going on at the time so we had the whole place to ourselves to explore.
Then it was time to line up and head out onto the stage. The orchestra was already in place so we filed in and had a few minutes to take it all in. It is a beautiful stage and theater. It was very impressive to see how large it was and all the empty seats, knowing that they would all be full that evening as the show was sold out.
The dress rehearsal went smoothly and again we finished ahead of time which was especially good news this time since there was only a small window of time for the bus ride back to the hotel to change into the concert attire and then get back on the bus to go back to Kennedy Center.
Everyone was so excited as we made our way to the stage. We were seated about 20 minutes before the show started so we just sat and watched everyone come in. I saw my friends arrive and was able to give them a little wave.
As Steven Curtis Chapman came out and the show started, he said that he felt like an energizer bunny during the Carnegie Hall show and that he wanted to slow down and really enjoy this one. And that was exactly the feeling that I had during the show. It still went by too quickly and as soon as it was over I wanted to do it again but there was more of a sense of taking it all in and enjoying it this time.
The show was amazing. The audience really seemed to enjoy it and everything went well. I feel so incredibly lucky to have been able to perform first at Carnegie Hall and now at Kennedy Center. Both experiences have been so positive and rewarding.
But wait.. the evening wasn’t over yet! As we did after the Carnegie Hall show, the entire choir went on a celebration dinner cruise.
I will be honest and say that this was not a favorite part of the trip. There are over 200 people and a small bar and buffet area. We spent most of the evening on line trying to get a drink or dinner. The ship is designed for these events so I don’t know why it isn’t handled better. It is frustrating and not enjoyable.
The only good part about the dinner cruise was that Steven Curtis Chapman came out with his wife to say a few words. He had done the same after the Carnegie Hall concert. Again, he thanked us for being a part of the concert and the weekend. He said once again that he considers us ‘his’ choir and he hopes to continue to do these experiences in the years ahead (Yay!).
We disembarked from the boat and were taken back to the hotel. It was time to say goodbyes as that was the end of the weekend. Everyone was on their own for travels back home the next day.
I can’t say enough how much I loved this weekend. It was great to catch up with good friends from Baltimore and choir friends. It was amazing to sing on stage at Kennedy Center. And it was a blessing to spend time with Steven Curtis Chapman once again. I hope there are other weekends like this in the future and I hope I am lucky enough to be a part of them again.
I have been a huge Disney and travel fan since childhood. I love going to new places and, of course, heading to Disney as often as I can.