Andrew Hamm: the Bipolar Express

Ruminations on theatre, music, and just about anything else that crosses my bipolar brain.

Friday, June 01, 2007

God's Wacky Sense of Humor

I'm working three jobs right now:

1) the Richmond Shakespeare thing, for which I'm spending most of my time composing, arranging, and rehearsing the collossal amount of music required for The Tempest,

2) the teaching thing at the Center for the Arts, which I'll be finishing up in two weeks, and

3) the new music ministry thing at Redeemer Lutheran Church, double the amount of work because everything is new.

So this is the busiest I've ever been. Ever. Seriously, grad school looks like summer vacation compared to this stretch of six weeks from May 1 through June 14. Given my druthers, I wouldn't have started at Redeemer until after the school year ended, but that's as may be. I'm really thrilled to be there, I'm enjoying the wind-down at CFA, and The Tempest sounds pretty cool thus far.

Except that I've been sick since the last week of April. It started as a raging sore throat and laryngitis the week I shot John Adams, and has since settled into consistent chest congestion and constant exhaustion. I'm tired 24 hours a day, can't get enough sleep, and am forgetting all kinds of stuff.

Yesterday, I finally made time in my schedule (by putting off music work and skipping a production meeting) to go to the doctor. I had tried a couple weeks ago, but the waiting list was 20 deep and I didn't have five hours to spend in a lobby. So they stuck needles in my arm, which almost makes me shriek with fear each and every time, and x-rayed my chest.

It turns out I have acute sinusitis. The common symptoms are a cough when you lie down and constant exhaustion. The doctor said "People who have this come to the doctor thinking they have mono."

Wonderful timing. God's wacky sense of humor at its finest.

It's not like the hard work made me sick and tired. I got sick the week before I started at Redeemer. This was just the perfect setup to make me half-suck at everything I'm doing.

According to the doctor, it's going to take about 3 weeks to clear up, and 5-6 days before I feel any better at all. So if you see me around town and I seem out of it, that's just because I'm totally out of it.

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  • At 6/01/2007 9:40 PM , Anonymous Rodrigo said...

    Oi, achei teu blog pelo google tá bem interessante gostei desse post. Quando der dá uma passada pelo meu blog, é sobre camisetas personalizadas, mostra passo a passo como criar uma camiseta personalizada bem maneira. Até mais.

  • At 6/02/2007 12:30 AM , Blogger Scott Wichmann said...

    Umm, I have no idea what the above comment says-- I think you should find the time to rest your mind & body. That seems like quite a workload you've got there.

    The funny thing about us in the arts community is that even though we love what we do, we tend to take on so much for fear of opportunities drying up (at least that's my experience) and we put ourselves last on the list of important things to tend to. get some sleep, sparky.

    Peace, Scotto

  • At 6/02/2007 8:25 AM , Anonymous Karen said...

    The first post says something in Portuguese about personalized shirts. Maybe a personalized shirt will make you feel better?

  • At 6/02/2007 8:42 AM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    You know, I really could use a good personalized shirt.

  • At 6/02/2007 9:17 AM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Given your health status, I think the personalized shirt should ready "Andre WHAM! Choose Life!"

    No, seriously bud, do get some rest and get better.

    But I must say - though I've only been involved in "The Tempest" for about a week now - that I think this production has REALLY great potential, and I hope it does live up to it. Scottie, hope you and Jennie can come catch it before you guys get too bogged down in "Odd Couple". Funny how things turn out, eh? There IS a divinity that shapes our ends! And although I haven't had much exposure yet to Andrew's music for "Tempest", based on past history, I think that's going to be just an awesome aspect of this production as well. I'm talking the thing up already and we don't open for two weeks.

    But again, Hamm-man...get better brother. We need you, but we need you healthy.

    Wake me up, before you go-go...

  • At 6/02/2007 1:43 PM , Blogger Scott Wichmann said...

    We start rehearsal for OC on monday--
    is there a run-through coming up soon?? I'd love to see one if we have the opportunity.

    Both of you guys be well this weekend and wish me luck-- my first Baseball game of the 2007 campaign is tomorrow against the Astros. Basically, my skill-set is the VBC equivalent of Coco Crisp. Last season, I hustled out an infield hit and my teammate Darryl (not strawberry) said, "Little dude, you're the anti-Manny!!"

    To which I replied:

    "yeah, because I hit the ball 3 feet and run like hell, whereas Manny hits the ball 500 feet and takes a leisurely stroll."

    Be sure to check my latest blog posting-- I think you'll chuckle at the title...

  • At 6/03/2007 3:19 PM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Scotto - posted on your blog, did get a laugh! Hope OC kicks off nicely, best to the guys and two dolls in the show.

    Andrew - music tomorrow night brother, hope you've found time for a bit of R & R today. I'm trying to cram lines into my head, because "time is tight"! (Hey, wasn't THAT a great instrumental tune back in da day???)

  • At 6/04/2007 8:12 AM , Anonymous Jacquie O. said...

    Sorry you're under the weather Andrew. I can take anything but a stuffy nose...then I become a big baby.

    On another come you and Frank are not in Henry IV? Is it because it means that you will not have a night off between now and the end of the summer??? That is a small sacrifice to make for the love of the bard! By the way...Grant did not offer me $500 to post this, I swear!

  • At 6/05/2007 8:06 AM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    I would LOVE to be in Henry IV. The History Cycle is my absolute favorite of all Shakespeare. But yeah, rehearsals for one show Monday through Wednesday and performances of another Thursday through Sunday isn't quite fair to either show. Not to mention that it's FREAKING INSANE.

  • At 6/05/2007 8:07 AM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    Speaking of "Andre WHAMM," Karen saw a product in the organic section of the grocery store yesterday called "Meatless Wham." I think that's hilarious.

  • At 6/06/2007 11:13 PM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Jacquie - why am I not in Henry IV? Wow, that's a good question, one I hadn't even asked myself... I think it's because you are the ONLY person in Richmond who is asking that question!!!

    Kidding, kidding...very sweet of you to even WONDER that in public, but I wasn't approached about Henry and I'm quite content to do my turn in Tempest (I don't know that Grant typically casts folks in back to back summer productions...probably best to spread the opportunites around). It also gives Andrew and me an opportunity to come fetch a seat to enjoy your performance a few weeks later. That, I will greatly enjoy and am looking forward to it.


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