Whenever a show gets to tech week, I start leaving my engagement ring at home. I've known too many stories of people losing diamond rings to take a chance with mine. I keep my wedding band on, though, only taking it off when I'm in full costume. Every day, I put the ring in the little "personal effects" basket at my dressing station, along with my earrings and other miscellany. Then, at the end of the rehearsal, I gather it all up again.
Well, for some reason I changed my routine during Saturday's matinee. I knew I would be in a hurry to get out of there, so I started cleaning things up during one of my longer off-stage periods. Needless to say, when I finished the show and came back to change, I had forgotten all this (change in routine is BAD!), and panicked when I couldn't find my ring. I, wrongly, assumed that the costume assistant had dropped it when she cleaned out my effects basket (which, granted, she shouldn't have done until I had gotten all my things out of it, but, still, it wasn't her fault), and so she and several other people tore the place apart while I got out of my costume and tearfully went to find Erik. It wasn't until after the reception, and many tears, that I could calm my mind enough to mentally retrace my steps. I realized that it had been in my wallet the whole time.
I have never felt such a mix of relief, joy, and embarrassment! I felt so awful to assuming the costumer had lost it; actually, I felt like a Diva. Not a good kind, either. (Yes, Virginia, there are good divas. More on that later.) I instantly started planning my apology!
I would have a chance to see them again the next day, when I was invited back to come "make an offer" for my costume. Remember, this is a several thousand dollar dress, not to mention the ostrich feather cape. But I was encouraged by the staff to "just stop by and let them know you're interested in having it." Ok, right.
Erik and I headed out Sunday morning to find a box of nice chocolates for my peace offering, then worked our way to the theatre past Sunday Tanglewood traffic. We found the costumers who had done all the searching, and they were only glad that I found the ring. I didn't feel that they were upset with me, so I must not have thrown too big a Diva fit.
Then on to the costume shop. Where I was presented with an incredible gift. They gave me my costume "for a song," shall we say. I was amazed. The gift of this production, this experience, was already so much more that I expected. And now I have an unbelievable momento, a physical reminder of all that I have learned here. It is a dress for a diva, for an opera singer, for me.