Today, we went to the theater--a big theater, where the balcony hangs steeply above the orchestra, where the high-up seats can be vastly cheaper than the way down ones. There was no question, when I bought the tickets, that we would be in the high-up seats. The only question was what we might be sacrificing to be there. Would we see only the actors' heads, and get no real sense of the show? Would we be faced with bad audio or bad vertigo? Would we, in short, be sorry we hadn't sprung for tickets to put us in the middle of the action?
Many tearful moments later, I can say that the power of the show unquestionably made it to the high-up seats. While I may have been seeing largely the tops of actors' heads, I was no less moved by their voices. While the story may not have appeared flat in front of me, it resonated fully, even traveling the distance it had to in order to reach me.
We tend to want to be in the middle of things. We tend to want the closest, the most important, the best. But often, in life, just being there is enough, and more. When what we are seeing (and hearing) is worthwhile, we can still appreciate it from a little distance, still have been a part without having had to be in the middle.
Today, we went to the theater. And from seats high in the sky, I still laughed, and cried, and came away with an incredible experience. (By the way, the show was 1776, an Encores! presentation at City Center. I have hope that I'll be seeing it again on Broadway some day soon--maybe in a different set of high-up seats).