It seems like only yesterday that our Spring 2016 crew was arriving (sporadically and belatedly due to weather that was anything but spring-like), filling the villa immediately with their smiles and laughter and wonderful energy. Three months flew by, but what a lovely semester it has been. For beautiful and thought-provoking parting reflections and poetry from UG Bloggers Sydney, Laura and Sean, continue reading!
Sydney Burrows: Dance (Goucher College, MD)
Wow. Okay. So I guess this means that I have to leave this beautiful and wonderful place that is ADA. The welcome dinner and open mic night feels like last week. Spring break was yesterday. Time doesn’t seem to operate normally here in Arezzo. I’m honestly feeling a whole lot of things right now, and I’m not sure I’ll be able to fully get them across in a journal entry like style. So here is a poem that I have free-written, and have used to try to process my current thoughts.
Three months flew like birds
who knew secrets of life and
art and awe.
One moment we stood, eyes
wide and petrified. And now
we hold hands, crying for more time.
Plato and Aristotle watched us
struggle with shame, but through patience and caffeine,
their philosophy we overcame.
New bonds, new discoveries,
I’ll miss the studio in which
creation and inspiration flow freely.
Home seems welcoming, but
smiles too bright. It will be hard to
leave this great life.
How is it that time seems to warp
and turn? Life goes on, but here I’ve
learned to stop and breathe.
Relax and stay
here and now
don’t stray far away.
Goodbye Italy, thank you for
more than I can say. I’ll never forget
this time at ADA.
Laura Mullaney: Physical Theatre (Muhlenberg College, PA)
I’m sitting here staring at my filled suitcases and, of course, I really can’t believe how quickly the time has passed this semester. I’m thinking about a cabaret piece I performed a few weeks ago that mirrored the ending of this program. We talked about the things we couldn’t physically pack—morning yoga with Nhandan, late night laughs in the villa, the newfound confidence I’ve gained here, the way that I found my voice. As I prepare to depart, I can’t help but admit that I’m not feeling at all the way I thought I would. When I first left for abroad, I thought that by the time I left Arezzo I would be ready, but I’m actually more nervous than ever to go home. I’m nervous that what I found here will remain in this villa. But I think back to something Nhandan has been saying over the course of this semester. She compared what we have gained to a river below the surface, suggesting that it will appear long after the program, perhaps when we begin to not think of ADA regularly.
What I’ll miss most about the ADA and Arezzo is the feeling that I carried this whole semester. I am the calmest I have ever been—ever, and I really think it is because I’ve never been so connected to my art, and to myself. I really feel like I know myself much better. I had no idea how much I needed this semester to reorganize my priorities. Now that I’m leaving, I know that theatre is crucial for me to function. I feel so lucky that my art brought me to this perfect place, and while I’m scared to live without it, I know I’ll carry each lesson I learned here (both in and out of class) with me at all times. So, I guess you could say I’m packing an additional suitcase, filled with the things I can’t pack, but the things that were truly the most meaningful parts of this semester.
There’s not enough gratitude in the world to express how I feel about this place. All I can say is thank you—thank you to my perfect ensemble for creating the safest place I’ve ever been a part of. Thank you to the professors and the staff here that helped me grow in ways I never thought possible. Thank you to Kristen and Monica for instantly making this my home away from home. Thank you to Arezzo for being the most perfect place to take a pause on real life and simply create. I’m experiencing a whirlwind of emotions, but I have never felt more fulfilled.
Sean McCoy: Physical Theatre (Boston University, MA)
How can we stay afloat on a thought
That wonders like the wind does
Through an overgrown forest?
I swear chasing time feels like scratching at things that aren’t there.
A constant cycle of waking up from dreams
That fade into memories the longer I look back.
But I’m always moving forward no matter
Where I’m turned.
Time is restless.
Each mark on this paper is another mark I’ll see in the future
Wishing I was just now making it.
I’m in the good times now and I want to be forever.
I’m at a point in my life where I hear
All the opportunities knocking.
My youth allows me to see everything
As an opportunity.
My dreams are like seeds being planted
In a garden of my cultivated ambition,
Too young to think that one day my fruit
May rot and fall to the Earth,
Too young to see that I will come back
Maybe that’s why fruit leaves its dreams
In the Earth, to grow more seeds that
Grow more dreams.
Too young to have regrets.
I’m a blank slate in a room filled with
Paint, ready to make my life’s picture a masterpiece.
I taste glimpses of the future in my mind.
Parts of it delight in feeling, if only for a second,
That I am where I am.
Fragile beauty finds itself naked in time.