All posts by Tom Vander Well

Wayfarer, husband, father, consultant, thespian, writer, thinker, and back porch musician. Pressing on through the journey one step at a time.

Madison’s Testimony

Madison_prayerLast Sunday night Madison gave a talk to her youth group about her upcoming mission trip to Thailand. After her talk, the kids gathered round to lay hands on her and pray for her. I thought this picture was really cool. As she watches the financial support for her trip quickly come in and receives affirmation from many sources, I think she’s experiencing a tangible reminder of how many people love her. She’s a good kid. I’ve shed more than a few tears of pride in recent weeks, watching her take this huge step of faith.

Chapter-a-Day Mark 14

A young man was following along. All he had on was a bedsheet. Some of the men grabbed him but he got away, running off naked, leaving them holding the sheet. Mark 14:51-52 (TM)

Tradition says that this streaker was a young John Mark, the author of the Gospel of Mark. It’s one of those little trivial details in scripture and it gave me a chuckle this morning. It’s a "guy" thing, I guess. I would have to imagine that it wasn’t funny at the time, but I’d dare to bet that after the joy of the resurrection settled in and the terror of that night faded, Peter and the boys gave him a lot of friendly ribbing about it. We tend to think of the apostles as these serious, hyper-spiritualized icons. Come on, these were salt-of-the-earth fishermen and worldly-wise guys. You know they would have had a good laugh thinking about Mark, butt naked – trying to make his way home.

Juggling Productions

Wendy and I had two rehearsals last night as we went to the first reading of Pella Shakespeare Company’s Much Ado About Nothing. Wendy is playing Beatrice and I’m playing Don Pedro, Prince of Aragon. We had an absolute blast reading through the first few acts. It’s a great group of actors and we’re excited to be part of it.

Chapter-a-Day Mark 13

Jesus said, "You’re impressed by this grandiose architecture? There’s not a stone in the whole works that is not going to end up in a heap of rubble." Mark 13:2 (TM)

TemplelowresI had the privilege of standing at the temple mount a few years ago. I stood at the base of the mount, next to the foundation stones – all that was left of the temple. I also saw a model of what it looked like (see picture), and it was impressive as the disciples commented. It strikes me that Jesus came, not just to build up, but to also tear down. I wonder – what grandiose works of modern man would he dismiss as nothing but kindling for the refining fire?

Read Thru & Rehearsals

Friday night the director and cast of our Tulip Time show came over and we did a read through of my script. It went really well. They had great feedback for me and I’ve got some work to do. The biggest thing was a reminder that the contest specified a maximum of six characters (I have ten) – yikes! – I have some reworking to do! The feedback was encouraging, though and on-target.

Rehearsals went well – I started to do a couple of scenes off-book which made me feel good. There’s such chemistry when I’m on stage with Wendy. It’s easy and natural. It’s easier to find those emotional moments and connections with the characters when I’m acting with her.

Getting to make-out backstage is fun, too!

An Evening as the Phantom

Taylor_and_phantom_lr  The high school prom was last night at the Opera House. The theme was "Phantom of the Opera" and I was asked to play the phantom as kids arrived. It was kind of fun, though I think most of the high schoolers had no clue who the phantom of the opera is and most of the looks I got communicated, "Ew, that guy looks creepy."

It was fun, though. I realized that whole affair is rather silly. So much ado about nothing, as Shakespeare would pen. I also had a chance to watch the parent volunteers scurry about. It struck me that, in a small town, the high school cliques don’t really change – they just grow up.

Blocking is Finished

We finished blocking The Dominie’s Wife last night. It feels good to have it blocked because we’re on a tight schedule and there aren’t a heck of a lot of rehearsals. I’m feeling a bit behind because the director and two of the other three actors did the show a few years back. So, I’m feeling out of the loop part of the time. It’s okay, though. I’ll catch up.

btw: I got a call last night asking me if I’d be willing to dress up as Phantom of the Opera for the high school’s prom this weekend and hand out roses to the young ladies as they arrive. Seizing every opportunity to embarrass my daughter in healthy ways, I accepted 🙂