Thursday, July 09, 2009

More Thoughts On Autsim & Acting

It continues to be difficult yet surprising for me to watch my daughter perform in public. Last week, at Trollwood's celebration of the end of the summer performing arts camp (called "Sun Celebration"), I once again watched my daughter perform.

I have to say that she was the best in the "Acting For The Camera" class -- and that's a big call for me because, as I have shared, I tend to spend more time protectively yet critically watching her, her interactions with others (and their reactions to her), comparing her to the others in terms of performance & acceptance among her classmates. So when this mother claims her kid was the best, it's a really big (and slightly uncomfortable) deal. I was so proud of her! Very emotional, but I struggled to maintain "normal parent appearance" for everyone's sake.

During the musical production number Allie was in, I did notice that she, in typical Asperger's fashion, had her eyes locked upwards, towards the ceiling. It seems that all my years of coaching her to look people in the face when speaking to them worked very well for the scenes she worked with one other student actor; but when on stage in a musical number, facing the audience, she does not know where to look, how to smile out towards the audience, etc. Something I think I may address with her... Or possibly contact Trollwood about in terms of educating their instructors. (Allie cannot be the only spectrum person they will work with at Trollwood, let alone in other settings.)

But my fears of Allie's continued interest in (obsession with) the performing arts are now shifting from "will she fit in?" to the more typical cautions that most parents of kids who dream of being on the stage (or directing etc. etc.). My main focus now is to convince her to keep a day job, continue her education, while she works toward The Dream in such a highly competitive job market.

This is one time, I know her resistance to "the practical" is completely as to be expected. ;)

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