Thursday, January 03, 2008

Our Year End Thoughts And Wishes

Another year flew by – and we’ve all had such fun contributing our different voices on ConCLAYve. Now at the start of 2008, we are once again sharing our thoughts and wishes. Please share yours. We love reading your comments.

Contribution from Nan:

An Artist - Damn Right!:

Looking back at 2007 I return again and again to that moment when I first heard Lover All Alone, live during the summer concert. How I held my breath (and of course, MrNan and Corabeth’s hands as well). How blessed I felt to be able to be in that moment, to feel the energy of the audience, the intense silence of listening, that moment at the end when you could feel the shared intake of breath before the overwhelming applause for Clay’s amazing voice, his poignant lyrics and David Foster’s beautiful music. For 2008, I hope that whatever brought Clay to write this lovely song, he feels encouraged by the reception and finds inspiration to write more.

Time and again, I am simply amazed at Clay’s ability to make me laugh out loud and this summer was no exception. But then – at Christmastime, he took my breath away for a completely different reason. His 2007 Christmas concert was my chance to drown in the beauty of his voice and to really recognize the purity and truth in his performances. I heard him singing My Grownup Christmas List and I was drawn into his world-weary but still hopeful interpretation. Completely unmanipulated, the tears came and I turned to Corabeth and saw that he had affected her in the same way. I am truly in awe at his growth as a performer and my wish for 2008 is that he embrace this growth and keep stretching his wings – there is so much for him to explore and I think Clay’s seeing that as well.

OMG – what fun we had and how he loved to tease us with the Spamalot news. Will he. Won’t he. He Will!!!!!! I loved this show and can’t wait to see it again. What a brave part for Clay to make his Broadway debut in. How unexpected. How challenging. Clay’s courage in tackling this makes me so very very proud to be a fan.

Last year, I wrote that Clay Aiken is an amazing man - a beautiful, radiant, fascinating man. And he is. That hasn’t changed. He is still a dorky, funny, smutty, witty, sexy, goofy guy. A courageous, tenacious person. A magician. A virtuoso. An artisan creating portraits with his voice. A complex mosaic. A beautiful mystery. And no jumping to the last page for me. This is one book I’m savoring. 2008 – here we come!

Contribution from skybar:

The Year in Review: Astrology

Clay has a fascinating astrological chart with 5 planets in the fire sign of Sagittarius. The planet Jupiter becomes extremely significant as it is considered the ruler of the sign Sagittarius and is also the rising planet in Clay's chart which means it is the first planet on his wheel of houses. It was in Leo when he was born, another fire sign and therefore it trines (easy flowing energy) his Sun and all his Sagittarian planets. In fact, all of Clay's planets fall within the trine between Jupiter and Mars. This is considered very auspicious in astrology and although he has many challenges (squares), these Jupiter trines add a strong element of luck throughout his life. People generally land on their feet when Jupiter is prominent like this, no matter what.

Jupiter has a cycle of 11.9 years (rounded to 12) as it transits around our Sun. It is the planet which symbolizes expansion, optimism, growth and oppportunities. Since he first came to the public's attention on American Idol, season 2, I have watched the movement of Jupiter as it transited Clay's chart. Jupiter stays in one sign of the zodiac for about a year. A new 12 year cycle began for Clay in 2002 when Jupiter returned to where it was when Clay was born, the year he tried out for American Idol. This began a process that can be examined year by year as the 12 year cycle unfolds.

Born with Jupiter trining his natal Sun, this trine was activated during the 2003 American Idol season. Naturally there were many other planetary transits happening but Jupiter's 12 year cycle along with Saturn's 29 year cycle is most significant in terms of one's development in the world. Jupiter expands and Saturn grounds and restricts energy in order to create clear boundaries for the energy to manifest most effectively. In fact, the entire solar system works like a giant cosmic clock, each planet playing a significant yet distinct role in the soul's journey throughout a lifetime.

So in the past year where has Jupiter been and how has that manifested in Clay's career?

When 2007 began Jupiter was conjunct (same degree of the zodiac) Clay's Sagittarian Sun. Jupiter often indicates the planning of future projects which will expand one's horizons. Clay gave us all another tour over the summer which furthered his reputation for being a great entertainer. The show, despite the “sloooooow” songs featured his comedic timing and brought lots of smiles and laughs from his audience. He also announced that he would be starring in Spamalot beginning Jan 18th through May 4, 2008 and he began working on a new CD. All this future expansion taking place during this Jupiter transit could be very fortunate for Clay's continued success. Finally, he ended this year with a very unique and different Christmas concert which proved to be classy and simple as well as often vocally stunning. While Jupiter has been moving through Sagittarius, Saturn came along to square his Sun, just as the tour began. I thought it fitting that this tour was very structured with a reverent tone (Saturn) just as Saturn began the square.

Future possibilities, new opportunities and lots of laughs were the highlight of this past year so what's next as Jupiter moves through the sign of Capricorn and enters Clay's house of career in February?

As 2008 begins we find Jupiter in Capricorn. Jupiter will cross his midheaven (10th house cusp) by the end of February. The midheaven is the highest point in the chart. The 10th house is our place in the world, our career, where we show the world what we can do. With Jupiter here, I believe Clay will find some major achievement on both Broadway and also with whatever projects come to fruition in the next year. The work will be hard and at times grueling but the payoff should be very satisfying. I believe Clay will find the upcoming year to be very grounding and constructive for his future. Generally, while moving through Capricorn, a planet will manifest as steady and grounded growth with an emphasis on practical expectations.

As Jupiter moves through this 10th house, Saturn will return to its natal position and trine Jupiter. Saturn consolidates one's life while Jupiter expands it and the flowing nature of the trine indicates a time when Clay could reap what he has sown. I think Clay could have a year of solid accomplishments and personal success. This is a very significant year as Saturn completes its first transit around his chart.

Contribution from ForeverYoung:

My GrownUp New Year's Lists

I love lists! I don't know what that means about my mental state other than I'm organized so every time I sit down to write something, lists come to mind. I'd love to list 2007 things that happened to me last year or 2008 things that I hope will happen this year, but I'll spare you. So I'll just go with 7 things that happened and 8 things that I hope will happen as a result of my following the fascinating Clay Aiken.

During 2007, I:

1. Attended 3 SRHP concerts
2. Lined up for 3 bus lines and got "the Clay touch"
3. Attended 1 CITH concert and didn't get a M&G
4. Attended 1 Neil Sedaka tribute at Lincoln Center and got very wet
5. Attended 4 pre-concert food fests and gained weight
6. Attended 4 post concert drink fests and got tipsy
7. Shared these experiences with many wonderful men and women and laughed and cried!

During 2008, I:

1. Will be seeing 2 performances of Spamalot, so far
2. Will be accompanied to Spamalot by my daughter, who said "Yes" when I asked her to go
3. Will buy several copies of Clay Aiken's new kick ass CD .... soon
4. Will watch every TV show and listen to every radio interview that Clay Aiken will do
5. Will attend as many Clay concerts as possible this spring, summer, fall and/or winter
6. Will faithfully read every article and blog that is about/or written by Clay
7. Will donate to BAF and UNICEF regularly
8. Will share these experiences with many wonderful men and women and will laugh and cry!

Happy 2008!!!!

Contribution from Corabeth:

I know they say as you get older, time goes by faster. But I truly think this year went by so much faster than 2006. This year felt different in so many ways. It felt like a celebration or at least the time when you are buying and hanging decorations in anticipation of a celebration.

I do think one of my favorite days of the year was October 16th when we got the Spamalot news. It started with a simple OMG text message from Invisible926. My fingers couldn't fly fast enough to read Clay's blog. I jammed my bluetooth in my ear and called Nanjeanne. It seemed to ring forever and then she picked up from outside in her beautiful garden. She hadn't heard. I think I screamed it one breath,


Her total and complete fangirly scream received an echo back from me. A friend in the office next to me asked me later that day what exactly precipitated the happy noises coming from my office.

Of all the gifts we have received this year in the form of concerts, performances, extras, teacher blogs and Spamanews, the most incredible were those of the M&G sessions. It seems that the last two years are when Clay embraced the fandom in a way that is comfortable for him and joyous for us. He was honest and funny, yet drew the line when it needed to be drawn. I don't know whose ideas that was but I'll always be grateful to him for agreeing to do it. I'd be even more grateful to actually win one.

I hope that the Christmas stories helped him see a bit of who we are too. They were like our own little chapters of Learning to Sing.

In 2007, he left me in love and in awe at the same time. That's when I wasn't doubled over with laughter.

If I saw Clay today, I would summarize my thanks and hopes for 2007 and beyond in this way.

Thank you, Clay

For the complete entertainment experience whenever I see you in concert.

For being brave enough to spread your wings and sing, dance, act and cuss on stage in Spamalot. It's a brilliant move. I wish you a photographic memory.

For caring about children in a way that inspires me to do more. For giving up your Christmas to bring hope to those in need.

For being willing to look the dorky goof who can't skate, when we all know differently.

For the “natural” the color of your choice....although I'm not quite sure what that is!

For finding a comfortable place with the fandom and embracing it.

For blogs that make us laugh, think, stand in the corner and feel loved. Sometimes all at the same time.

Thank you for singing "Lover All Alone" in concert.

I wish for you

Comfort from those who are so troubled in this life that they seek to hurt you (intentionally or not).

Love from your friends, your family, your fans and a soulmate to “share your everything”, wherever she is waiting.

The album you want in 2008, with the promotion you deserve.

An invitation to that award show you want to, as a nominee.

You knock me offa my feet.

Contribution from Pink Armchair:

2007. What a year. For Clay…and for me.

I went back and looked and…yowza! I was kinda busy. During 2007, I wrote 39 installments of my Climmel skits, stood in three memorable bus lines (well, four if you count the abortive – and sweltering – one in Cary), hosted eight cellcerts and gave two (with a little help from my friends!), attended eight concerts – Columbus, Sterling Heights, Cary and Asheville on the Soft Rock in a Hard Place Tour, and South Bend, Waukegan, Kalamazoo and Merrillville during Christmas in the Heartland. Oh, and somewhere in there I wrote and submitted four holiday stories and was fortunate to get to read one of them three times on stage, meeting Clay in person twice. Yes, it was certainly a memorable year!

I will always remember the fabulous Biltmore House and how beautiful it looked in the moonlight that August night as we waited for Clay; babbling inanely on the Sterling Heights cellcert about late Mayor Harold Washington’s wacky funeral as we waited for Clay; and meeting up with lots of fabulous meers at preconcert dinners in Sterling Heights, Cary, Asheville, South Bend, Waukegan, and Kalamazoo as we waited for Clay. And the wait was always worth it.

And it was a fantastic (and I daresay unforgettable!) year for Clay, too…including two enlightening trips for UNICEF, a high-profile showcase on Holiday on Ice, a lucrative appearance for the BAF on Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?, a prestigious role in the Neil Sedaka tribute at Lincoln Center -- and the exciting announcement that he will be making his Broadway debut in Spamalot in 2008. Hopefully a new CD is on the horizon, too. Soon.

For Clay, I hope 2008 is his best and most fulfilling year ever, both personally and careerwise. He deserves it, and much more, for all of the joy he has brought to so many.

And for me…here’s to lots more fun trips, big laughs and great times with wonderful friends I would certainly never have met without him. Thank you, Clay, and Happy New Year.

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