Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Classic Sean Kelly... I Really Miss Him.

Backstage after performing the Pirates of Penzance
I woke up in the middle of the night last night. I’d been dreaming. I wasn’t scared nor startled; in fact, right before I awoke I know I heard music and laughter.  I'd been dreaming of Sean.

I was blessed to have known Sean Kelly the better part of my life. I think I was 16 the first time I babysat for him and Mary Ann.  They had a young family and lived in a beautiful century home; which has since been torn down and is currently the local fire department parking lot.

Like any small town, it was tightly knit. Growing up, my next door neighbour Joyce worked for Sean. Then, when we bought the house next to Rob and Connie, he'd always chat with me (both before and after then Men of Song rehearsed) over my chain link fence. We`d been acquaintances forever but it was our mutual love of music and theater that sealed our friendship.

From the very first time I stepped on stage he was right there with me. For six months a year, for almost a decade, we were inseparable. He`d always greet me with a hug and never be too shy to offer a new joke. Matter a fact, it was his encouragement that eventually led me to choreography. To this day, I remember how much fun I had teaching the boys to dance staging Guys and Dolls.

Yes, we had a blast. My phone would ring at the office and with not so much as a hello, I`d hear “do you know how cold it is outside today Rhondi?” To which my standard response was “...soooo cold you saw a lawyer walking down the street with his hands in his own pockets?!”

Roaring laughter was how we rolled, that was classic Sean.

I know it's been years; but to this day I miss the ability to pull up his lap. I'd hand him a quarter (he always made me pay to ensure attorney/client privilege) and I'd tell him what I had going on. I could tell him anything. He believed in me. I mean really believed in me and for that I am eternally grateful.

If I close my eyes I can take myself back. Thirty of us crammed into the guys dressing room at the Opera House and Ken would start; Sean, Liam, Paul, Tutti et all would join. The harmonies were crisp and sounded amazing. To this day, The Lion Sleeps Tonight is still one of my very favourite songs. The bass line in particular.

Thanks for the memories Sean. I miss you everyday and will love you always.