The photograph below was taken by the Ottawa Fringe Festival’s Archival Photographer Andrew Alexander. It’s incredibly special to me, because I can remember the moment so vividly. It was three-quarters of the way through the festival. I was going on my usual wander around the Courtyard, making sure everything was in order. I remember stopping for two seconds and taking a breath… one that felt like the first deep breath I had taken since the beginning of the festival. I looked around and realised that I hadn’t truly taken the time to appreciate all the hard work that went into making this festival possible, until that very moment. I scanned around me, soaking it all in, noticed my friend Andrew, and smiled.
Not only was this a pure moment of joy, but it got caught on “film” too!
It’s 12:30pm. I’m in the Ottawa Fringe Festival office. And it’s quiet.
I mean, reeeeeaaaaalllllly quiet. I’m the only one here.
And I’m calm. Completely calm. Kind of hungry. More than a little tired. But calm.
The 15th anniversary edition of my beloved festival started yesterday. A year’s worth of hard work all comes down to 10 days of fantastic and fantastically awful theatre.
Normally I’d be panicky right now. Run off my feet. Needing to sit down but unable to.
But I’m not.
99% of my 20+ staff members have returned this year. All of them work their butts off and love what they do. Which means at this point in the process, I feel useless. I have “nothing” to do, but watch it all unfold.
Though it’s eerie. So many of my staff commented on how smoothly things are going. How nothing has exploded yet. How we all feel so calm.
So so calm.
And in love with my job.