Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Final Blocking

Though I am sure there will be changes, and I confess to some gaps in my recall in regards to some of it that we have not run in a while, the blocking stage of Romeo and Juliet was completed today. At least as best as it could be given some disadvantages.

One such is that one of the characters who was to do some tumbling for some of the scenes strained his back, and no will be unable to work any of the sort of things that had been worked out. They will have to be revamped in some way.

Also on this particular day, I had to stand in for someone. "Juliet" specifically. But wrap you mind around this...I stood in for the actress playing Juliet, in a scene in which she is not actually playing Juliet. The actress will in fact be playing some random Montague in a street brawl.

If the logistics of all of that are making you dizzy, relax. It's got more layers than an onion. And since I only had to do it for today, it hardly matters in the slightest, outside of being an intriguing mind bender. I was being me, playing a small part that will normally be played by another actress, that normally plays another part. Whoa.

The scene for all of this warped metaphysics was the first scene of the play. As I said, a brawl in the street between servants of the two houses. "Do you bite you thumb at me, sir", and all that.

(To add an even weirder element, I also appeared in this scene years ago, in the Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Abridged. Flashbacks were inevitable, and in fact, have come up in various other moments of this production as well.)

As fun as that was, my actual character is not in the scene. So I admit I was just sort of sheep-ing my way through that part of rehearsal.

Later, we reviewed and expanded upon the blocking of the Capulet Party scene. In this version, the Friar is in fact present. I have received not particular instruction as to where to go in this scene, except when the whole party moves. So I have, so far, kept mostly in the back, observing everyone else, letting those who wish to approach the good Friar do so. My version of the Friar is more laid back than would be most interpretations of him, but I still somehow doubt he would be whooping it up, as it were, at the block party. Though I should come up with a bit more to do, and have a bit more motivation. I have a lot to think about in that regard for all of my scenes in the second half, save one. (The last.)

It is to be on Thursday, (our next official rehearsal) that we start running the show from the top, and going through as much of act one as possible. Friday then is act 2. Tech week, (though we have no real tech as it were) will start on Sunday. Each day of next week, except one, we will be running the whole show, in theory. This is both scary and a relief. Relief in that I will finally get a chance to work on my dynamic with Romeo a bit, and to deliver the lines to a living actor as opposed to a tape recorder, as has been my practice when getting off book.

Scary, in that even the director told us that though she had faith in us all, we are a bit behind in where she wanted us to be. Costumes and props are not yet secured. Books are still in hands. (I am not innocent of this...for though I know, I would say, 90% of all my lines, I do not yet have them all. But you can bet I will be working quite hard on that in the coming days.)

Not that I won't have to call for lines a few times in the coming days. But as I have said here on the blog before, the memorization process is not fully complete until I am actually working the lines in the scene with the other actors. (This is not film, after all, where rehearsal is not always even on the menu.) Granted I will have far less time to do so for this show than I am used to. But I am determined to make it happen.

Nothing tomorrow for me. It is stage combat day for those who need to fight. The Holy Man fights not.

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