We all get it. That sinking feeling when the curtain closes on closing night. The emptiness when we realise that it’s over. Whether you’re in the performance yourself or you’re watching a performance, the post-show blues are coming.
A play can change your life in many ways. As an actor, you may meet people in the cast or stage crew that become your new best friends. A character can provide you with so much wisdom and a new outlook on life. The experience of watching or being a part of a production can create so many memories that you’ll remember for the rest of your life. So, what do you do when it’s over? Here are some tips for how I overcome post-show blues.
Keep in touch with your fellow cast members. Just because the show is over, it doesn’t mean that you won’t ever see them again. Theatre helps you to create some fantastic friendships that don’t have to end just because the production is over. They are also the one group of people who will understand what you’re going through so you can all go through it together.
Take some time to yourself. Being part of a production is exhausting, and it’s a big change going from doing a show every day of the week to then it all being over. You’ve spent the last, however long being constantly busy and always surrounded by people that you need time to recharge your batteries and relax. Self-care is so important and taking time for yourself allows for unwinding after a busy show period. If you jump straight into another production, you’re not giving yourself any time to relax, and you can burn yourself out.
When a reminder comes, smile, and carry on. If someone says “red” and you just want to blurt out “the blood of angry men” because you saw Les Misérables last week, it’s okay. Reminders are likely to come up because the show is what is still in your mind so even the smallest things relating to the show, your brain will pick up on. When this happens, just smile and remember but don’t dwell on it for a long time. This will make it harder to concentrate on other things.
Look forward to the future. This most likely isn’t the last production you’re going to see or be a part of. This might not even be the last time you watch this show or perform in it. The future, although unclear, is so exciting.
Be glad it happened. Theatre provides such happy thoughts and memories that you don’t want to spoil it with sadness. Obviously, it’s reasonable to be upset when a show is over but try to think about how amazing it was and how glad you are that it was a part of your life. Theatre memories last a lifetime, but post-show blues pass.