In the performing arts world especially we spend years training first in one place, then chasing the best teachers. From exclusively training we move onto a time of landing gigs. The gigs vary depending on the craftwork, industry, and audience we engage with and cultivate. We could end up in one place for a while – on a cruise ship, an episodic show, or extended theatrical show – but more often than not, we’re on the road.
Some of us like the road. The travel, meeting new people, and revisiting old friends, are all beautiful things. But the road can be hard. The rigor of travel, trying to cultivate consistent relationships, and the ongoing culture shock/code shifting, can all be challenging. If you come to a point where the road bears a heavier burden than usual on you, it might be time to think about building.
Building takes stability, consistency, and a vision for local engagement. It takes being placed – affecting and being affected by the culture of a specific people. It also takes an understanding of the relationship between the local and the global – an unescapable reality of today’s connected world. If you gravitate to this kind of work maybe it’s time to think about building.