The Digital Journalist
Photograph by William Claxton

After two hours, she was fully made up and beautifully dressed. She was helped to one of the stage wings while hanging on to the arms of two strong men.

The fanfare played and a big booming voice announced to the audience, "Ladies and gentlemen, Miss Judy Garland." Judy waited about thirty or forty seconds before she walked out on the stage. The applause, whistling, and shouts were thunderous.

It seemed to me that Judy gave a very professional, yet desperate performance. While she sang and spoke, she was actually crying out for help. She was using her performance brilliantly to express her need and her condition. It was a plea. I wondered how many people in audience felt this too.

I must confess that much of her performance was shtick not unlike Jerry Lewis's "love me, love me" performances with songs like "Swany, how I love ya, how I love ya..." But when she sang "Come Rain or Shine," I was very much moved, as was the entire audience.

Her show that evening was an enormous success. She left the stage only after several encores. She literally raced to her dressing room. Her face expressed both hysteria and happiness as she reacted to the applause of everyone backstage. She was triumphant and looked ecstatically happy.

I thought that it was a powerful yet therapeutic performance; but what about tomorrow?


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