Miriam Scott and her husband, Jack have been South Loopers since the beginning. They raised their son Ben in Dearborn Park 1--he went to high school at Jones College Prep--and they are involved in all sorts of things. For instance, Miriam, an editor for a big publishing house, volunteers at the hostel on Congress and advises visitors from around the world on where to go and what to see in our fair city. She sings in a local chorus and participates in a neighborhood book club. Jack is a graphic artist (known for creating a signature "single page" calendar every year as a sort of big trademark calling card--always with a similarly drawn ancient theme) who also does calligraphy, archeology in the Middle East and lute playing to make ends meet. He has played the lute at neighborhood events like opening night at the South Loop Neighbors photo show and the Dearborn Park Advisory Council's Movie in the Park.
Here you can see him
on Channel 7, ABC-TV demonstrating calligraphy, which he has been doing for 45 years!
Right now, Miriam is a supernumerary
in the current Lyric Opera production of Boris Godunov
--another way she puts herself out there getting involved in all sorts of things. There are still three performances left of the run--tomorrow night, Saturday night and next Tuesday night. She is in the coronation scene in Act 1. She doesn't speak or sing as a "super" but she has to stand there looking noble and in character as a Russian noblewoman. She has done work like this at the Opera before--and I know it's thrilling for her.
A few years ago, she even asked me to come with her to an audition
. We were both rejected for the limited number of roles, but I sure had fun trying out. It also gave me perspective on the commitment a supernumerary has to make, what with rehearsing, costumes, makeup and, of course, the performances themselves. All for little compensation. But again, it is quite a thrill to be involved in the grandest of the grand opera. Luck plays a part, too: you have to fit into the costume, large or small.
One thing about living in the South Loop--you don't have far to go to the opera house
at Madison and Wacker if you are chosen to be a "super." Whether you sing; or just stand there. Looking however the director tells you to look. You aren't far from home.