The Magic is a Given. Duh.

Portland's 2015 cast, top left to right: Noelle Guest, Michelle Borum, Kathryn Leehane, Carisa Miller Middle: Susan Domagalski-Fleming, Kylie Menagh-Johnson, Mary Mandeville, Kelli Martinelli Lower: Michelle Porter, Christi Krug, Gypsy Martin, Susan Moshofsky Not pictured: Nicole Rardin

Portland's 2015 cast, top left to right: Noelle Guest, Michelle Borum, Kathryn Leehane, Carisa Miller Middle: Susan Domagalski-Fleming, Kylie Menagh-Johnson, Mary Mandeville, Kelli Martinelli Lower: Michelle Porter, Christi Krug, Gypsy Martin, Susan Moshofsky Not pictured: Nicole Rardin

A few weeks prior to auditions for our 2015 Listen To Your Mother:Portland show, the 2014 cast including producer Kelli Martinelli and myself, gathered to meet the baby daughter of one of the group. It had been months since we’d seen one another, and most of us have only been together a handful of times ever, but we no less felt like the sisters we had become during our experience together with the show. We hung on each other, laughed loudly, shared deeply, and reveled in the darling infant so dear to us, who had come into being during the time we had come to be so close.

As we were hugging and saying our reluctant goodbyes, I registered a moment of doubt about our chances of producing anything close to something so special, a second time. It isn’t a perfect comparison, but it was something similar to loving your first child so extremely you cannot imagine loving your next as much.

And then the moment your second child is born, you are immediately reminded of the limitlessness of your capacity to love and cannot believe you ever had a doubt.

The magic of Listen To Your Mother storytelling isn’t confined to a single isolated event, particular cast, year, or city. The only thing that separates these shows is time and space. Each component is part of a whole. A huge whole. As in all of humanity.

It’s seems obvious to me now, but I didn’t see it until yesterday, when the 2015 cast met for the first time to share their stories. It felt like the first time, but also like we’d always been together. The Listen To Your Mother directors and producers talk constantly about the phenomenon that is the entire LTYM movement. The magic is continual. It is a given. I’m not sure it’s something we create, but rather something we tap into by seeking to hear the stories of our lives.

The feeling of connectedness, of wholeness, is somehow both surprising and expected. Each person and story is their own, yet one.

I cannot wait for you to meet our incredible 2015 cast. I’m also very excited to introduce them to our 2014 cast. In my wildest dreams, we would gather all the casts and audiences from the now 39 cities from the last six years of Listen To Your Mother all in one place to join hands and sing, “We Are The World,” and get into Guinness for the largest ever group hug.

Kumbaya, everybody.

Be part a part of this-Thursday, May 7th, 7:30pm at The Alberta Rose Theatre. TICKETS on sale now and going fast.