Michael Ball - alone together
Home Page / The Story / The Songs / The Lyrics Act I / The Medley Lyrics / Lyrics Act II /
Lyric Changes / Sound Clips / Jason Carr / Jonathan Butterell /Reviews /Interviews /
Your Reaction / MBFC Forum Discussion / In Concert / Links and Credits
want it all to be up to the audience to make up their mind. What
think they're seeing and what they think they're being told."
Alone Together means different things to different people. Here are two versions of 'The Story'. You may agree with these interpretations, or disagree in whole or in parts. Barbara's version was specifically written for the site, as a guideline for anyone unfamiliar with the show, and as a starting point for discussion and new ideas. After visiting this site, and having watched her DVD many times, Dawn Yang has written her own version of the story.
tells the same story, but they vary in many ways, as each is very
much a personal interpretation.
would like to add your own version of the story, we would be delighted
it on the site. Email Debbie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reaction for more feedback
and ways to contribute to this site.
A life that’s complex, varied, intriguing as the words and music that surround it.
The story begins with the appearance of the storyteller, who has come to the stage without a character. “No, don’t look at me.” He stands in the spotlight, lonely and scared “how depressing”. But the spotlight is there and the audience has come. They are looking to him to present a show. “Sing something then . . . anything” or whistle. “Relax, let go, let fly.” It is hard for him to let go, to relax and find the character he intends to present, but he begins to change and find his confidence, “if your whistle’s weak, sing, sing!!” He has now found his way back to his story and the character he is presenting, “look at me, this is my world, it’s outrageous!”
The storyteller begins to step outside himself, making the transition into another person. He has been on the stage before, creating for an audience other characters from his life and his memories. The other lives he creates change those memories and sometimes the lines between his life and those creations become thin. But, songs he says are like tattoos, the outlines may appear familiar, but they are filled in with the colors of experience. “this is your song from me”.
There is a melody that flows through everyone’s life. This is a heartbeat “a tender and placid refrain, seductive, delicious it haunts you… as time and again round it goes, round it goes, always it goes”. When you can hear the music, it always tells you the truth. No matter what story you tell to yourself, the music always knows the truth. “It shouts of your shame and it calls your name this tune the song of your soul.”
The song of the storyteller begins with a child’s memory. “Things you do come back to you as if they knew the way”. So long ago…
This song of long ago begins with a child’s memory, when his father said good-by to him. This was the moment his childhood ended and he needed to grow up. His father tells him, “daddy didn’t have an easy start.” His father is concerned with his own situation and does not see that he is hurting his son. He does not promise to be there for him. There are only vague promises of a future meeting and he should take care of mummy when daddy’s away. The memory is full of the child’s pain and remembered with the adult’s bitterness. His father is the man who got away, leaving his small son and his wife. As an adult the son tells him “good riddance…good-by”. His memories of his father are memories of anger though he still feels the pain of that first rejection. He is also conscious of his mother’s hurt and how she never gave up her dream that this man, the love of her life, would come back one day.
His father had promised his mother when they were young and everything was possible that she would be the only girl in his world and he would be the only boy. The son tried to make her the same promise, but they both knew this was not possible in the way she needed. Her son would forever be the only boy in the world to her, but she knew that he could not promise she would forever be the only girl.
His mother was there for him, and as a child he tried to take care of her. He would watch her getting ready for work and promise to say a little prayer for her. He would imagine that when she was going to work and he could not see her, that she thought of him and would say a prayer for him also. It would be him and his mother “together, forever that’s how it must be”. But this is also the memory of the adult, his mother has died and he is alone, “oh how I loved you.”
His mother’s death helped him to say good-by to both of his parents, and to try to leave their memories behind. This would be the only way he could completely grow up and become an adult. “I couldn’t walk, but I tried to run.” For the first time, he finds he has no strings, that he’s not tied to anyone. “How I love my liberty”, he insists as if saying this would make it true. But the music does not fit the happy words and he doesn’t feel like he is free. He has no wings, so he tries another way to freedom. He is building a stairway to paradise in desperation and in hope one step at a time. “I’ve got the blues and up above is so fair ……stand aside I’m on my way.”
He begins to explore dreams for himself because “if you don’t have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?” He decides the only way to live his life is to live it in the moment. “Now, not some forgotten yesterday – Now tomorrow is just too far away”. And he tells himself he has found a life, found a love, found a way to forget what has gone before. The best of times is now. . . is now…is now….is now. If you say this enough then it will be true and you can even believe in now.
But now doesn’t last and the memories come back. What is life, except for disappointment? “I saw my whole world burn up once” he remembers. “In the end it meant nothing.” “What do you mean ‘greatest show on earth’? It really wasn’t all that much.” “I fell in love and now that person has left me. How could I stand here in so much pain and not die from it? What can death be, but one more disappointment?” Is that all there is?
But he has found a dream and with that dream, perhaps he has learned how to live his life. There is a life on the stage. “Nowhere can you get that happy feeling.” This is the trick to life, if you are not happy, you can pretend you are happy. You can live someone else’s life on the stage. You don’t need to deal with your problems, you can deal with other problems that a writer has sorted out for you and have that happy ending. The life of a person in the theatre is lived out of time. You travel from place to place, you work hard, and come opening night they’ve put a star on your door. You are a success. “Let’s go on with the show!”
He has a brilliant career on the stage. He can make audiences feel happy or sad and this gives him great pleasure. These are not his emotions, this is a part he is playing. He travels far from the place he grew up. “I’ve had enough of just passing by life.” He has found a place for himself. But he is always moving, not staying anywhere very long or letting people come too close. The relationships he is forming are professional, when the play is over he moves on to the next production. This is how he is living his life, this is how he falls in love, this is how he identifies himself….to make the audience happy.
He is a successful actor, but when the play is over and everyone goes home, he is alone. He feels love from the audience, he is happy, but it is all just a nice dream, not a life. It is his life “If you think that you’re strong enough, if you think you belong enough…if you think you belong.” He is alone on the stage at the end of the play. He takes off the actor’s costume and sits alone with his memories. Nice dream.
He has found someone he is very interested in having a relationship with and she has indicated she is very interested in him. “She touched me and she knew it……the world is alive and shining.” The idea of pursuing this relationship fills him with excitement. But he doesn’t tell her. He is in love and happy, but “yes, my heart, she’s wonderful….she touched me…...I hear music and there’s no one there”, this is only what he is telling himself. What does he tell her “remind me not to mention that I love you…remind me to be sorry that we met.” Does he really think she will forget to remind him, when he never tells her how he feels? “I wish I could forget you, erase you from my mind.” “A love that like a knife has cut into a life I wanted left alone.” He doesn’t believe that he is loveable, that anyone would love him. He cannot trust his heart to give him advice, he has been hurt so much in the past. Because he cannot tell her he is in love with her, she doesn’t stay and he is alone again. “What now my love now that it’s over…….watching my dreams turn into ashes.” He finds now that he has no dreams of his own, that the world is turning upside down, and no one is left who will care about him as a person.
He is standing alone in shadow, with his hands at his sides, and his eyes looking out and seeing all the people in his life who have left him. “How can I lose you? You’re all that I know.” His father walked out when he was small “how was I bad?” His mother died “how can I live now, missing you so”. The lover he had wanted so much to stay left him a long time ago and now this new lover has gone away. “I was another boy, simple and happy and free….how did he turn into me?” But was this ever really him? Isn’t this the actor, the handsome leading man in charge of his life on the stage? Isn’t this really him in his own life, “No one should always lose, can’t I find some kind of peace, nobody owns the blues, but I have a long term lease.”
He has changed his life before and doesn’t know if it is possible to change it again. “Is there life on Mars?” he asks. He does not feel there is any life for him here. He has lost everyone who had been part of his life and now he loses himself. He withdraws from his life to listen. He finds the Bach. The Bach is quiet, but empty when he starts to listen. There is a chance of redemption there if only he can hear the words. “Over my head, I hear music everywhere.” He does hear the words, Bach speaks in the music if you can listen. “Over my head I hear music everywhere…..there must be a God somewhere.”
This is not the first time he had thought to take his own life. The first time, he could not believe death to be more than another disappointment. This time it is a real possibility. He asks questions, but they are not the questions of death, they are questions of life. What is it like he asks? Is it warm…is there light? Is it endless and empty and you wonder on your own. Or are there familiar faces far as you can see. “Will I wish for all the things I should have done, longing to finish what I’ve only just begun?” Will my mother welcome me or will she reject me because I gave up? He is choosing life, understanding that only heaven knows how the glory goes. Only heaven can know what each of us are meant to be and the answers to all the questions of life.
We are alone in this world, each with our own lives. In our lives, we can reach out to each other and be together with another. He knows he can reach out and touch another person, he can connect with an audience, and not be alone. Each of us was meant to live in the starlight. He was a star on the stage, now he can find the courage to become a star in his own life. Alone and together, to reach out for each other, in rain and in starlight. He is much stronger now. The great unknown together…together. He does not need to force an emotion this time, he is learning to live it.
The storyteller has come back to say good-by. The story is over, the stars have gone. There was a connection made, the actor with his audience and being here feels good, feels right. This isn’t love, call it light. This was a life on the edge of darkness, a person afraid of the world. A person who is learning what it is to live in light.
After the Ball
This is the life of an artist; this is the journey of a soul…
“I have been thinking about what I want to show you this evening. I want to take a journey, a journey through a life. A life that is complex, varied, and intriguing as the words and music that surround it. I am sure that the paths I’ll tread have been well-worn by many others.”
Through the audience comes Michael onto the stage, holding a bottle of water and a towel in his hand. Dressed up casually in white shirt, black needle stripe jacket, and light blue jeans, no make up, he is as real as he can be; he is as close as he can be. He is a great musical performer, talented, passionate, and simply a natural for the stage. And yet, this is the moment that makes him a little nervous, because he is about to do something new, something that he has never done before, but something he really wants to do (No, Don’t look at Me). “No, don’t look at me. This is crazy. Do something new and they wait for you to fail.” Gone are the orchestra, the back singers, and the elaborate set; taken over are the black grand piano on one side of the stage, the bare hard wood floor, and the raw stonewall. “Oh, just look at me, scared, still singing songs but it’s lonely”. The way he eases his nervousness is simple and easy, just whistling a happy tune (I Whistle a Happy Tune / Anyone Can Whistle / Give a Little Whistle). “Whenever I feel afraid I hold my head erect and whistle a happy tune”. As he turns around with a smile on his face, you know that his confidence is back. He is himself again. “Sing, Sing, so please look at me now. Here on stage, this is my world. This is terrific. I’m so glad I came”.
He is going to tell the story of a life, the life of a musical performer. But where to start (Where or When)? Memories have flooded in, memories of happiness, memories of sorrow, memories of pain. “Some things that happen for the first time seem to be happening again. And so it seems that we have lived before and laughed before and loved before, but who knows where or when?” So many memories, they are so easy to confuse the brain. Does the same error reoccur? Do we forget the pain once the wound is healed?
“I have been thinking about what I want to share with you this evening”, Michael starts a short speech, which is also the only time in the entire show he talks to the audience as Michael Ball. Then, as he finishes his speech, Michael is already into the character. The story is begun.
Songs and Life
Songs of life (Blue), every life is full of songs and each song contains life. For him, a musical performer, there couldn’t be a better way to tell the story of his life through songs. “Songs are like tattoos”, every moment of his life has been associated with songs. “Ink on a pin underneath the skin, an empty space to fail in”. The veils of life will be pulled off, layer after layer, by songs, and only songs. “I’ve been to sea before. Crown and anchor me, or let me sail away.” In retrospect of his past, he would sing out his honesty, his pain, his happiness - his life!
Song of the soul (Padam Padam), it is the song that first strikes you, then stings you, saddens you, and will stay in you for the rest of your life. Look how mercilessly it will strip your inner self down to the bone and expose the intangible evilness of your soul! Look how easily it can destroy the perfect of your small kingdom that you painstakingly pieced together with self belief, idealness, as well as, lies and fakes. “Padam, Padam”, did you hear the clashes between justice and viciousness? “Padam, Padam”, did you feel the contending between truths and lies? The strong pounding echoes around the space and shakes the audience’s hearts. “So when destiny’s bells start to toll, you’ll admit that you lost and you paid the cost. Cry out the song of my soul. Padam!” As the last “Padam” is ended on a shouting of awe, the entire theatre turns into dark except for a sole spotlight directed on to him, who is in the center of the stage and ready to reveal the truthfulness of his soul!
If only he had a simple and happy childhood, just like an ordinary child (Son of)! “The same sweet smile, the same sad tears”. But at very young age he was troubled by his drunken father, and at that young age he started to know to protect his mother, who was the other victim of this abusive relationship. “The cries at night, the nightmare fear”, instead of fun and happiness, his childhood was filled with cries and fears until one day his father said last goodbye to him (Little Pal). “Little pal, when daddy goes away, promise you’ll be good from day to day.” Life might be too hard for his father. He had decided to leave his wife and son, to leave the world that had given him all the sufferings. “So till we meet again, Heaven knows where or when. Pray for me, little pal.” He could be blamed for his addiction and abusing, but with the not-too-much conscience left in his heart, he still loved his wife and son. He might be drunk for most of the time, but at this moment he looked very honest and sincere.
Life was too cruel to his mother (The Man That Got Away). A loving wife and a caring mother, she never hesitated to give love even without being returned. Things just didn’t turn out right for her. “The man that won you has run off and undone you. The great beginning has seen a final inning.” She loved her husband and her son, longing for a sweet family life. But “ever since the world began, there is nothing sadder than a one-man woman looking for the man that got away.” Facing her husband’s leaving, she was calm. She simply accepted everything that life gave to her and left the past behind. “Good riddance! Good bye”, this was her strong will to live and her anger to the unfairness of her fate, rather than a sad goodbye. For the sake of her little boy, she had to live on.
What’s left after was a broken family: a mother and her son, who would cling on each other to survive (If You Were the Only Girl in the World / Say a Little Prayer). The little boy, who loved his mommy so much, prayed everyday that they’d live together forever and ever. “The moment you wake up before you put on your make up, I say a little prayer for you.” The mother, for whom the only hope was her little boy, prayed for him whenever she could. “At work I just take time and all through my coffee break time, I say a little prayer for you.” And yet, the fate wouldn’t stop tormenting him. The least thing he wished to happen still happened, and happened too soon. His mommy left him while he was not strong enough yet to face this world all by himself. She might have found her peace in Heaven, but what about her little boy? At first he couldn’t accept the fact that his mother was gone. “The memories that find me keep coming back to remind me to say a little prayer for you”. Every day and night, he couldn’t help but still praying for his mother whom he believed would never leave him. But every praying simply added more pain until one day his heart couldn’t endure any more and he truly realized he had lost her. “Oh how I loved you together forever. That’s how it must be to live without you only means heartache for me.” The death of his mother left him not only with pain and sorrow, but also with anger and hatred to the cruelness of this world. He kept telling her how he loved her, “Darling believe me, for me there is no one but you”! But there was nobody there, and his happy days with his mother were ended on a howl of pain.
The world around him became empty and dark, what’s left were himself, and the spirit of his mother and father (Mother). His mother, whose life has gone, would live in his heart forever. “Mother, you left me but I never left you”, he said to his mother. His father, who had given him the life, had never lived in his heart. “Father, you had me but I never had you”, he told his father. “Mother, Father, look what you’ve done, I couldn’t walk, but I tried to run”. The loss of his mother had turned the boy into a man overnight.
On His Own
All of a sudden, he found himself totally free (I Got No Strings). Satirically, he told himself: “I have no string to hold me down, to make me fret, to make me frown. How I love my liberty, I’m as happy as can be.” Although he had never welcomed this kind of freedom and liberty, he would not act like a whining baby, either. He needed this kind of self-irony to convince himself that he had nobody to depend on; he needed this kind of self-suggestion to accept the fact that he was totally on his own.
The fate had made him a person with strong will, which would strive him continuously towards his goal. He was determined. His effort and his talent would make him on top of the world (I’ll Build a Stairway to Paradise). “I’ll build a stairway to paradise, with a new step everyday. I’m gonna get there at any price. Stand aside I’m on my way.” He found himself to be happy again, because for the first time in his life, he had dreams and hopes, and he would do anything to make them come true (Happy Talk / The Best of Times). “If you don’t talk happy, and you haven’t got a dream, then you’ll never have a dream come true.” A new life, full of wonders, was waiting for him. He wanted to enjoy everything that life offered him, anything he thought would make him forget the bitterness and feel the existence. “Living for the moment” became his motto. As he hung out with his friends and drank in bars, he was so happy; as he lighted his cigarette and breathed out the smoke, he really enjoyed the moment. “The best of times is now, not some forgotten yesterday, tomorrow is too far away. So hold this moment fast, and live and love as hard as you know how, and make this moment last, because the best time is now.”
The traumatic experiences in his childhood and his early maturity had made him look at the world from different perspectives. In many ways, he felt that he had already seen through the world (Is That All There Is). When, at four years old, his house burned down and he was shivering in his pajamas watching the whole world burning into flame, he asked himself: “Is that all there is to a fire?” When, at twelve years old, he was in the spectacle of this wonderful circus, and yet, feeling something was missing, he asked himself: “Is that all there is to a circus?” When he lost his first love, whom he had loved head over heel, he thought he’d die. But he didn’t and what he felt about love simply became “Is that all there is to love?” Cynicism did help him to deal with the world. He had found his own way to survive and smile at the unfairness of the world. He had experienced the worst, and still he knew, there might be more to come. “When the last moments comes, when I’m breathing out my last breath I’ll be saying to myself: “Is that all there is to life”.
He became a musical performer. Show business, full of appealing it is, is probably the most magnificent and also the cruelest business of all (There's No Business Like Show Business). Once he stepped into this world, it lured him; it kept driving him to go on. Lucks might have played an important role in his career, but certainly his determination and his talent have made him come on top. The brilliancy and the bitterness, the splendor and the ruthlessness, they are inseparable. He simply embraced them all! “There's no people like show people. We smile when we are low. Yesterday they told you (that) you would not go far, next day on your dressing room they’ve hung a star. Let’s go on with the show!”
He was brilliant. He was wonderful. He finally reached what he’d been longing for: success, huge success (The Medley). Returns to the stage he is, dressing in the same clothes, except with a bow tie and a tux, which symbolizes him on stage. Show after show, Broadway musicals, USA tours, he thought he had found the most meaningful things in his life, which is music and stage. “Let me sing a happy song, the crazy words that roll along, if my songs can start your laughing I'm happy.” Applause, cheers, and spotlights, he believed that he had found his lifelong love, which is singing. “Love, love changes everything.” Yes, this love did change everything for him. He found respect; he found confidence. Having experienced so much unhappiness in his past, how he treasures this great happiness! It was such a wonderful feeling to bring happiness to his audience and he was so grateful for his audience who had been supporting him all along. When he kneeled down, opened him arms, and sang out “I was born to make you happy”, he was expressing his thankfulness from the bottom of his heart!
But his success had cut him off, in many ways, from his connections to people and to the real life he used to live. Despite all the glories and splendors he had on stage, in real life he was a lonely soul. After the show was over, after the curtain was down, after the lights were off, he found himself deeply sunken into the loneliness. The unbearable loneliness and emptiness was nibbling up his heart slowly (Nice Dream / Solitude). He thought he was strong enough to be alone, but he also knew how he yearned for other’s company and comfort! “They dug me my very own garden, gave me sunshine, made me happy”, but it was just a dream, a really nice dream! He took off his bow tie and tux, and carelessly threw them to the corner of the stage. What had always accompanied him were his solitude and the memories of the past. How many times he prayed to God to help him! “In my solitude I’m praying, dear Lord above, send back my love!” Was he asking for too much or could it be only a dream? “Nice dream….”
Falling in Love
God must have been touched by his prayer. Love quietly arrived (She Touched Me / You Are Just in Love / Yes My Heart). It all started with that touch. “She put her hand near me and then she touched me”, she wanted to let him know that she fell in love with him. “I simply have to face the fact that she touched me”, he realized his heart was touched and his feeling was awakened. He used to be in love before, head over heels in love with the most wonderful person in the world, but as she went away, his feeling for love was gone. He eased his pain with cynicism and buried his sense of love deep inside his heart. He thought he could not love or be loved anymore. But when he found out that “she touched me” and “nothing is the same”. He was shocked. The feeling was so strange and strong that he even couldn’t believe it himself. “I hear music and there is no one there. I smell blossom and the trees are bare.” He tried very hard to convince himself that he was in love again. “She's wonderful”, “This is a chance”. He told himself that he should follow his heart, to open his heart, and to love her!
The shadow of his parent’s failed marriage had always been troubling him. He wouldn’t want to be trapped inside the relationship of love, and eventually get hurt. So when love became real for him, he suddenly found himself very scared. He simply could not trust love. Something in his mind kept forcing him to reject love and he was not sure if he was able to love anymore (Remind Me/ I Wish I Could Forget You). The once opened heart was closed; the once lightened spirit became heavy. He couldn’t tell her that he could not love her. What he could do was to constrain his love, to act cold, to ignore her, and to upset her. “Remind me not to find you so attractive. Remind me not to gaze at you again.” He tried so hard to overcome his weakness but he failed. “I have a will made of steel, but when it seems about to bend remind me not to mention that I love you, remind me to be sorry that we met.” All these feelings were so painful! “When your charm begins to blind me, I’ll simply tie my hands behind me.” How he wished to forget her but he couldn’t! This was a love “that’s like a knife has cut through a life”; “a love I may regret but one I can’t forget”. He knew that his life would be gone with this love, and yet all he could do was to let it go. Deep in his heart he had hoped that she could understand him a little more and stay in love with him a little longer. He might just need a little more time to find back his trust in love. But the damage was already done and she left him.
So he had lost his love (What Now My Love). Never did he expect he would be in such pain! He was at the edge of a nervous breakdown. Cynicism wouldn’t help this time, because the love was too deep to be teased away. His heart was bleeding and the pain was so strong that all he could feel was numbness and unreality. “I walked at night without a goal, stripped of my heart, my soul”. Maybe this time finishing his own life would be the only way to free him from the pain. “No one would care, no one would cry, if I should live or die. What now my love, there is nothing only my last goodbye!” Was this the final disappointment? Was he strong enough to go on?
Searching for Answers
After the outburst of his pain and sorrow, he calmed down and tried to figure out WHY. He was sunken in deep reflection of his past, his loss, all of the losses (How Can I Lose You). “How can I lose you, you’re all that I know”. Why did he always lose things that he treasured so much? First was his family and so was his childhood, then was his first love and so was his belief in love, now just as he thought he felt love again…... “No one should always lose. Can’t I find some kind of peace? Nobody owns the blues. I have a long term lease”. Was it something deep-rooted in himself or should he blame the unfairness of his fate once more? “I have a blind spot forty miles wide, I have a terrible weakness inside”. He finally realized that he was the one to blame for losing his love. “Oh, that how I always lost you. That’s how I’ll always lose you?” And he knew that his weakness would always control him and he just couldn’t win.
Having lost everything in his life, for him life on earth was simply like a boring movie on the screen, one scene after another, absurd, ludicrous, and pitiful. Was there a place where he could start all over again (Life on Mars)? Having seen through the vanities of the life, he felt totally aggrieved and detested the world and its ways. His success and glories seemed like illusions. Where did he belong? Where was his destination? He looked up at the vast sky and yelled out desperately “Is there life on Mars?”
This is the point of “to be or not to be”. The world seems stopped, only music on the piano, like the sound from Heaven, lingers in the air, so soft, so peaceful, and yet, mingled with some trilling sound and pounding notes (Prelude-Bach)! He was in deep somberness. As music fades away, his pure voice was singing, “Over my head, I hear music everywhere. There must be a God somewhere.” He was trying to seek for answers from God.
Softly, the music re-started (How Glory Goes). It was so comforting and soothing, just like a heavenly feeling! Is Heaven as nice as we imagined or at least what we believed? He kept asking God what it would be like in Heaven. “Is it warm?” “Will there be trees?” “Is there light?” “Do we live?” “Will I want?” If he were in Heaven, will he regret? At such young age, would he miss everything in the world? Will he reunite with his mother? Strangely, except for the last one, all he asked about Heaven were things he already had on earth. How could he abandon this world while all the affinities to it still alive? “Only Heaven knows how glory goes, what each of us is meant to be”. When you finally find the real meaning of life, life itself, however, would have already lost its meaning to you. What belongs to you is always yours; what would happen is bound to happen. For another time, he was able to confront the world, not cynically and gloomily, but positively and sensibly.
Alone, each of us leads our own life; together, we live on this planet. As long as we are together, nothing is to be afraid of. As long as there is love, nothing can stop us from continuing on (Alone Together). This is the fact of life, if not the truth of life. “Together, our love is as deep as the sea, our love is as great as a love can be.” Yes, love. The miraculous cure is love. Love, which connects all of us together, will rekindle his passion and lead him through thistles and thorns!
So that’s how life is (This Is What It Is)! After all the sufferings and struggles he had been through, he finally dragged out the reality of life: no matter how complex, how varied a life is, you simply have to go on. Your fate might be decided by birth, your future might have been fixed, but you’ll still try to control your future. A bit of shine in his eyes, a trace of smile on his face, he is telling us that he has come back to life. The same smile, the same face, and the same clothes, but it has been a reborn for him. He finally stands on the solid ground, in the light, and “Here is good, feel almost right. Don’t call it love yet, just call it light.” He becomes stronger, more persistent in searching for love. “This is what it is to live in light.”
The story is finished. Michael is out of the character and returns to Michael himself. After all the emotional ups and downs, after all the exhaustions and exhilarations, he looks especially calm. The finale is a short “After the Ball”, and he has chosen to sing it without piano, just with his voice.
“Many a heart is aching if
you could read them all. Many the fears that have
vanished after the BALL”
Only after his pure beautiful
voice reaches every corner of Donmar, do the audience pull themselves out
of the show, the show of a life, the show of a lifetime. What he has given
us is his heart and soul, with truthfulness, sincerity and honesty. What
he has left us is reflections on our own lives, all different lives. What
he might not know is that he has touched so many hearts, and life is never
Page updated 17 March 2002
Site Established December 2001, by Barbara Uram and Deborah Norris
Copyright belongs to the authors of each 'Story'