Saturday, April 03, 2010

Rough But Profitable

Tonight was one of those night's that was just difficult for any number of reasons.

To begin with, there was personal tension. I of course am not going to get into any details about it, because that would not be proper. I will say that it did not involve me, and I am not 100% certain what the situation was. It was an argument between two people who already knew each other, and I just did my best to not be in the way of it. I mention it here in broad terms only because I have agreed from the very start of this blog to be honest about the experiences I have, and that was honestly what happened. It honestly made me a little nervous. But that being established, there is no reason to talk about it any further.

And actually there is not much of a need to talk about the actual rehearsing either. As with last night, tonight was devoted to blocking a rather large swath of the script. This section, in addition to being long also includes some more complicated blocking than in other parts of the script. (Including a moment or two during which I admit I feel a bit awkward about the blocking I have. The only time that has happened thus far in this play. Not a bad record at all.) Not a lot of creative work going on from an acting perspective tonight.

Plus I think everyone was a bit off in regards to picking up the flow of what they were doing. Myself included. I had an entrance, (with no lines) at one point in the play that I have never even noticed as I read the script until tonight when I missed the entrance. (I walk in, there are about 5 lines of dialogue from other people, and then the intermission curtain. In self defense it was easy to miss in the script.)

I did get to sit at the desk I will be using in the play for the first time today, so I have that in my mind. I'm told the desk seems to have been one of those set pieces that has made an appearance many times on the stage of the Potomac Playmakers.

Aside from this though, tonight's rehearsal is probably best left at that.

Outside of rehearsal itself, however I have a few things on which to comment.

First of all, the speed with which I have become comfortable with this cast. I can't claim I have shared any intimate secrets with any of them, but I have arrived at a level of social comfort with them after two weeks of rehearsal that has often taken twice that long to achieve. This is especially surprising to me, because as I have mentioned here on the blog before, I had never met a single one of these people before.

And perhaps that is it. It's been such a long time since I stepped into a brand new group of people, perhaps I have actually mellowed since the last time it happened. I may never be a social butterfly, but perhaps I have actually become more at ease with strangers. What a wild possibility that presents.

It could also be that the people themselves are just easier to get along with than some others with whom I have worked. Or it may be that comedy scripts tend to open people up to one another faster than dramas. In reality, it's probably a combination of reasons.

After rehearsal I was talking to the actress who will play my love interest in the play. She kindly mentioned to me how much she enjoyed working with me so far, and the feeling is mutual. We then discussed methods for memorizing lines. (At least we tried to as we collected our things...we got booted out of the building mid-sentence because it was being locked up at that exact instant.) I shared with her my method of recording my lines into a recorder, and listening back to them. This she had tried, but she told me she cannot stand her own voice played back to her. This is common, actually. But I am used to it, so it doesn't bother me. After our chat, she decided she would give the method another try.

One more highlight of the evening for me; I was told I looked young for my age. Very good to know, indeed. There was thing about the compliment I couldn't agree with though, (though I didn't mention it at the time); I was told that I couldn't actually be as young as I looked, because people that young have not lived long enough to summon up the cynicism and bitterness I am showing on stage. I wanted to mention to them that when one experiences the life I did by the time I was 25, one learns plenty by that age. But I didn't. Too tacky. Here on the blog though, I have no shame.

So, that was this evening's events. Much went on to feel good about outside of the actual rehearsing. Which is all part of the process as well.

Our next rehearsal is Monday evening. It has been made one hour earlier because we hope to cover both Acts One and Two on that day. (There are three acts to the play.)

Happy Easter to everyone who celebrates it. Otherwise, Happy Passover, and other such holidays about which I know little.


Heather Conroy said...

Happy Easter Ty. I enjoyed your post. Don't forget to post pictures here- I would like to see them.

Susan Abraham said...

Lots of confidence in the sketching of events and sharply-tuned observations as always, Ty.