It was when I was about six or seven. I was visiting my maternal grandmother’s house during a school holiday, and one day my elder cousin invited me to watch a theatre play with her in the city centre. She said it was designed for young children just like me.
“Do you know the story of Hansel and Gretel, hon?” she asked me as we both prepared to go out. “They are gonna perform that story today! It’ll be fun!”
I had never been to a live theatre performance before, so I had no idea what it would be like. I followed my cousin’s lead and hopped onto her Toyota Collora with curiosity and excitement in my heart.
The venue of the theatre event was the auditorium of a local community centre. My cousin led us through the rows of chairs and we both sat down right in the middle of the room. She wanted to make sure that I could watch the play properly.
The moment the show began, what was happening on the stage became my entire world. When Hansel and Gretel were caught by the bad witch, I became so nervous that I held the edge of my chair tight, even though I knew the story and that they would eventually be fine. And when the bad witch went to take a nap and Gretel turned to the audience and shared her secret plan of how to get rid of the witch, I cheered with all my voice.
Such was my enthusiasm that when the performance ended and my cousin and I stood up to leave, my cheeks were pink, my eyes were dreamy, and I couldn’t stop talking about the show.
Since then, live theatre performances became my love. Whenever I had the chance to watch one, I would always be found amongst the most engaged audience, and later, in my secondary school, I even took part in the school’s drama club to experience the world on stage myself. To this day, watching a live theatre performance remains one of my favourite activities in the world.
My cousin must have no idea what a profound impact that single event had on me that day when she took me out for a small theatre performance to have some fun time together.