This entry is going to be a catch-all for the main point of the last two nights of rehearsal. Being at the end of the rehearsal process though, I will not belabor too many technical points this time.
To begin with, I have been eating food the last two nights on stage, for the first time. It seems to be going well. I have never really had to consume food during a scene before, and was somewhat nervous about it. Having done it the last two nights, I feel better about it. no real worries there.
Last night was a bit bumpy, but I did not really mind it. I want quality of course, but it felt like one of those times when you knew things were shaky in a major way for the last time. I just had a feeling that we were honing in on that balance a show needs headed into it's opening night. (Which is often proceeded by a short time of being slightly off.)
Tonight was that night of balance. Perhaps the night of the "click", as talked about here a few weeks ago.
I have no problem saying tonight's rehearsal was, overall, our best. True, I did not see 100% of everything that went on. But what I saw was more polished and streamlined than it has been all week. The parts I was actually involved in felt much more natural and energetic than at any point in the rehearsal process. That allowed me to tap into inspirations I had only caught glimpses of before, in the areas of nuanced line delivery, motivated blocking, detailed background business, and all of the other things that contribute to a true well rounded performance.
In short, this is as natural as it has felt for me the entire time thus far.
Maybe part of it was due to the fact that we had a mini-audience tonight, in the form of a local photographer and his wife, who do alot of work for the theatre. (Providing laughs from the house.) Some might have been due to the fact that the backstage/dressing room monitors were picking up the onstage dialogue better than they had been. (In my view, anyway.) But I think most of the positive aspects of tonight were due to those intangibles so often associated with the theatre. The moments that just line up the way they need to. They magical feeling when nearly everyone simultaneously hits their optimum stride. That energy and feeling in the air that is greater than the sum of its parts, and only seems to be there before a really good show. Alot of that was there tonight.
In many ways this show is unlike the other stuff I have done at the Opera House. But in other ways, it is eliciting feelings within me that remind me a great deal of my earlier theatre days. At least at that theatre. I mentioned discovering my old letter, and being cast with someone I had not seen since my first production at the OOH. I even got an email this very day from someone else that was in that first show, and from whom I only here once a twice a year.
The director even provided us with some drinks after rehearsal tonight, to celebrate. Something which, though not unheard of, particularly reminded me of my early days at the OOH.
Plus, the warm weather finally arrived this evening.
The cast is not a huge one. There are no big production numbers. The set is simple. The script is neither epic in length nor exceptionally genius in its content. And as described on this blog previously, I have found myself at various times more drained before rehearsals than is normal for me. Yet all the bumps notwithstanding I feel compelled to mention my prediction that there will be something extra about this show. I don't know why I feel this way, given that the details leading up to and included within the experience would indicate a fun but rather typical theatrical experience for me. Yet, whether its for me personally or the entire cast, one night or the entire run, there is something of a positive nature waiting to surprise me. Perhaps the rest of the cast and crew as well.
Either way, tomorrow marks the beginning of it all. T-minus 19 hours and counting...