Sunday, November 20, 2005

Top to Bottom

I wanted to give a recap of last night's rehearsal, since I did not post it then.

Most significant about last night; it was the first time we ran the entire show in one night. If you have ever been involved in theatre you know that the first night this happens is always a long night for everyone involved. Last night was no different. I would say it took about 3 hours and 15 minutes to run the show, with some short breaks. That sounds long, but when you figure there were various technical aspects that were being run for the very first time, it could have been worse. (Indeed I have been in shows where it has been far worse than that going into the final few rehearsals.)

Previously I mentioned how different the atmosphere would be once the entire cast showed up each night. I was quite correct. Even though there were still several people missing, 90% of the cast was there, and it was quite packed at the Opera House. (Not to mention a tad too noisy in the green room for my tastes.) But such is life in a large show.

Frankly, it is not so bad. Sure I can get a bit edgy when I am in a very crowded noisy room. The temptation is also there to feel tired near the end of the night. Yet with all of the people milling about in costume (we added those last night), that first sense of being deeply involved in a production hit home. That sometimes-chaotic kinetic energy of a theatre filled with people (hopefully) doing the various things they need to do to be ready for the next scene. All part of the gig. Seeing that reminds a theatre person that they are once again part of the big production.

As for the rehearsal itself, I at long last got to watch act one. As far as scene/costumes changes, set movements and technical aspects, it is much more complex than act 2. It also contains a lot more people. It almost felt like I was watching another production entirely, so unfamiliar with the first half of the play was I. (I had read it of course, but did not remember the overall sequence of it.) The act one folks had their work cut out for them from the beginning, and they still do. That being said, I have no reason to believe it will not be ready in time. Believe me, I have been in plays where I doubted the readiness of the thing far closer to opening night than this show currently is. It needs some oil, but not a new engine, to use a silly metaphor.

As for me personally, one of my costumes I am wearing is one I wore for a previous show. So it already fits perfectly. It is a dark greenish suit. People seem to love it, as I got several compliments about it from people. I guess there is something about the green suit.

The director would like me to be louder during the courtroom scenes. Louder during my objections to the proceedings and such. I must remember to project more. It is not an uncommon problem I have depending on the show I am in. Plus, being louder will make Mara appear even more flabbergasted by the unfolding silliness. I will do so from now on.

The director did say everything I was doing was "ringing true", though. This I am thankful for. I would rather have to work on bigness and volume of a presentation, than having failed at being true. Being true to the character and his actions/words is an actor's first duty, in my view. If that is accomplished, no other note from a director is unattainable.

The next rehearsal is tomorrow night. Only 6 more practices after that.

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