Here at Q, we see Halloween as an opportunity to engage with elements that are critical to the process of spiritual development.
Masks have been a significant part of our lives for the past 18 months. To many of us it has been an unwelcome discomfort. However, the uncomfortable reality is that we have all been wearing masks our whole lives.
We invite you to join us on a journey of intrigue, as we delve into the mystery of Masquerade.
Taken from the musical Jekyll and Hyde, this spectacular piece points to the masks that we all wear.
"Every day, people in their own sweet way, like to add a coat of paint and be what they ain't!"
Do you ever think about a friend, family member or famous face and wonder what they're really like? Maybe other people are thinking the same of us! "What's behind the façade?!"
In 1994, Jim Carrey starred in the movie, The Mask, in which Stanley Ipkiss finds a magical mask that transforms him into a hilarious alter-ego with a green face! Stanley is out of luck, out of love and out of money and we join him as he decides to put on The Mask...
The masks we wear allow us entry into all sorts of places and situations that we may not have otherwise felt welcome. In the movie, Van Helsing, we are drawn into the world of the masquerade ball.
Unfortunately, caught up in the glamour and the glitz, we may find ourselves needing to be rescued from the dangers that are lurking beneath the surface. There are some things from which our masks offer no protection.
With a blend of music from The Carpenters and No Mercy, Joel gives us a wonderful version of this Leon Russell song.
Why do we continue in our masquerade?
In this clip from the Disney classic, Aladdin, we see that it's easy to pretend to be someone other than our true, honest self. Can we believe that without the pretence, we will still be loved and accepted for who we are?
In a year where the subject of slavery and inequality has been brought forcibly to our attention, we honour the writing of the great African American Poet, Paul Laurence Dunbar. As the son of slaves, he bravely acknowledged that all people, slave or free, hide their true feelings in order to avoid the inevitable conflict that true honesty brings.
The implications of the poem just read are both far reaching and powerful. Here are Anth’s thoughts on this.
Mask wearing might have its benefits but what happens when you take it off?
Stanley finds that it doesn't come without its challenges.
So let's get down to business! What is the mask you wear?
Chris tells her own story and gives you the opportunity to recognise your own.
As Chris explained, the first step to finding freedom from a life of masquerade, is to identify the mask we're each wearing. With this next song, Danny points to the belief that lies beneath the surface of all our masks: The fear that we are not enough and that we can't love ourselves or be loved by others without the masks we wear.
Jim Carrey was the star of the movie, The Mask, but over recent years he has reflected on how role play and reality can become seriously confused. Recognising he could not keep up the facade, he makes peace with the man behind the mask.
"If it's that easy to lose Jim Carrey, who the hell is Jim Carrey?!"
Like Jim, we have to learn to be loved for who we are behind the mask. As Connie beautifully sings in this Natalie Grant song...
"There's no need to mask my frailty 'cause you see the real me."
Anth wraps up our journey with an invitation to take off your mask and boldly declare “This is Me”.
Stanley finds freedom from the mask he's been wearing as he throws it into the river...but sometimes the masks we've worn are so attractive, not everyone wants to let them go!
Our finale comes from The Greatest Showman as we remove our masks and boldly declare "We are Glorious!"
We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has made this production possible and to you for watching.
You can watch all the videos from this blog one after the other in a YouTube playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQ_QKxQ5kDydff2dG78f6_u855M9fEDqt
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Happy Halloween and may we soon be free from the masks we wear!