Every month for a year, Prudential is gifting free tickets to theatre fans from across the U.S. with the Prudential Marquee Moments Broadway Ticket Giveaway, presented by Playbill. For the chance to win, entrants are answering the prompt, "Tell us about a time you seized the moment and—after asking yourself, ‘Now what?’—changed your life for the better?" in a short essay or video. Read a few of last month's most stirring responses below.
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Maria Babasyan: "I would never put my hand in a subway door to stop it from shutting, but the one time I did…it happened to be for someone who became the love of my life. We have been attending shows of all sorts for the past five years ever since. Everyday I’m grateful for seizing that moment, the door, and every memory that followed."
Nathan Hoty: "My dance teacher sat on me and broke my hip my sophomore year of college. After this happened, I thought my dance career was over. COVID shut down my university right after and I had to make a change. I started researching physical therapy for hip surgeries and studying how to rehabilitate dancers. I took four semesters of college anatomy courses including anatomy for dancers. After six months with no pain meds the whole time, I recovered and started dancing again that fall! I’m now a personal trainer and corrective exercise scientist helping other dancers stay healthy and prevent injuries or fix them after. But because of the work I did on myself, I am not only still able to dance, but I’m currently the dance captain on the national tour of The Cher Show."
Paytra Gessler: "My dream was always to be a musician in NYC. I grew up in a small town where kids would make fun of me for wearing rainbow knee high socks and making music videos in my garage. So at 16, I took a one way train ticket to New York City and seized my moment! I never turned back. After sleeping on someone's couch in Brooklyn for a month and waking up at 6 AM to take the train into the city, I finally got on my feet. I lied about my age and got a job at some gym willing to hire me. That very decision changed my life, yes, but also changed me. I went from shy to outspoken, nervous to confident, self conscious to respecting myself. New York does that to you, I guess. It brings out the fighter in you! Now I'm writing and releasing my second album and living (what feels like) a dream every day. I love New York. I love music. I love all of the talent here. And I'm proud to say that I was one of those 'dollar in my pocket and a dream' type of people."
Steve Dolores: "I was a senior in high school when my life hit a speed bump. I was flabbergasted. I failed my high school English class. My main concern at that time was that I was no longer eligible to play baseball! This broke me, but it was at this juncture I had my Marquee Moment. I knew something had to change, and that something was me. I needed to start applying myself and doing my work. It was one thing to not be eligible to play baseball, but not being able to graduate was a whole different ball of wax. This was a moment that I’ll always remember as a defining moment in my life. Fast forward a few years and I’m back at my high school, teaching English in the same classroom. My Marquee Moment lives with me every day."
Anna Poulton: "I began practicing Taekwondo when I was nine. It was a great way to stay healthy, meet new friends, and improve my body and mind. By the time I went off to college, I had achieved a black belt, and I knew that I wanted to continue my journey further. However, the nearest Taekwondo dojang was quite far from my university, and there were no organizations on campus. So during the first week of classes, I made the decision to start my own Taekwondo club! As student clubs required three members to be official, I gathered some new friends I had just met to help organize the club. Over the course of four years, we held weekly club meetings, social events, and even led self defense classes for other campus groups and organizations. It was a lot of fun, and I became close friends with the people I started the club with. My undergraduate experience would not have been as fulfilling without this decision, so I am very grateful that I seized the moment when I did."
Charlotte Sasso: "After years of unsuccessfully trying to have a baby on our own, we finally took the leap and went to a fertility doctor. Through many appointments of testing, prodding, and poking; through uncomfortable shots and daily doses of pills, my husband and I stuck together and persevered through months of disappointment. Finally, just when we thought it wouldn't happen for us, we got the happy news that I was pregnant. Our little guy was strong and we got the son we were destined to love. The journey and the risks were certainly worth the reward!"