Last night it was back to rehearsal for me, having been to only two rehearsals last week.
For the first time last night, some members of the technical crew were present. Well actually only one, but he knows what he is doing. Which is why we did a sort of modified cue-to-cue. That is to say in most cases we only staged the moments at the very start and end of most scenes, so that the techie could take pictures and get a sense of what sort of set changes took place when. The light and sound operator also benefited from this.
"Richard" was ill, however, so some of last night was a bit awkward. There was also one other actor missing. In better news, however, the play is now entirely cast, what with "Rivers" finally being cast. So we are set in regards to actors.
Other than those two I mentioned, the entire cast was present last night, for one of the few times, if not the first time. (I'm not sure.) Certainly more people were in the theatre last night than at any other point in our rehearsal process thus far.
We did run my very first scene in its entirety last night, because it was the first time that almost all of the characters in it were present. Specifically, it was the first time Queen Margaret was present on the same day as I. I am playing the scene wherein that character speaks to me as though Buckingham is somewhat disturbed. In one way because Margaret invades his personal space, and my Buckingham is quit private and introverted. In another sense, because Buckingham, though usually agnostic, is somewhat wary of Margaret's power to curse. (Even though he is not a target of same in this scene.)
My reactions here will require more work, and I can only assume they will improve as we do the scene more often. I wasn't terrible, but I felt stuff. I don't want stiff, I want unnerved. I must strike a balance between unnerved and catatonic. I will have to work on that a bit on the fly, as it were, because beginning next week will start doing entire run-throughs of the whole show, with no time to go over any given scene individually.
One thing that helps the scene a bit is that, as staged, the royalty and nobility are in private, and hence they are not required to keep up their public personae. Hence I can allow Buckingham to be a little more vulnerable than he otherwise would appear in most other scenes. Yet I do not want to overdue this. Much of his response to Margaret will be due to the fact that he is exhausted from having spent much of the night socializing...something he can do only in small doses much of the time.
So this is one of the points I must work on the most in the coming days.
Earlier in the day I had been at the venue to present a workshop/lecture once again. This time of one-hour duration, as opposed to the two0hour length of my last one a few weeks ago. You may recall that for that one my topic was mistakes, and how to correct them on stage. Yesterday morning's topic was how to make sure your experience as a background character is a valuable one.
The group I spoke for this time was much larger, and skewed much younger than the first group I addressed. Yet the message I intended to impart was the same. In essence, to not feel that the background is a lesser place to be in a play. In fact, I mentioned, one can sometimes have a bit more fun and creative freedom in the background, with two or fewer lines than one can as a principle, or even a supporting role. I proceeded to list some don'ts and do's in regards to honoring the stage and taking the tiniest of roles seriously. It seems to have been well received. Hopefully I will have made some of them feel better as they are assigned their roles for this late summer theatre camp production.
Tonight at rehearsal we will be running all scenes that include Rivers, so that our latest cast member can get caught up. After that, I am not sure all of what we will be doing, but I do know, based on the director's comments near the end of last night's rehearsal, that it will be a night of hard work. All of them are, but this one, as more elements come together, is going to step it up a bit. As always, loyal blog readers, you can find out all about it here.