So, we’re half-way through the rehearsal period now and we are more or less where I wanted us to be, in terms of what we have covered, so well done to you all and thanks to Hannah P, Margaret and Russell for what you have done already. Hannah P is doing a great job and working you hard with the singing, and I am very grateful to her for her commitment to the show, despite her hectic and demanding career. Margaret continues to be wonderfully creative with the choreography, of which there is a lesser amount required in this show, so do make the most of the dance numbers and give them, and Margaret, your all. It was lovely to have Russell with us last Thursday and I hope that those involved were suitably “Pyjama’d out”.
Our costume dept, are really getting things sorted now and Caroline C is going to visit her contact tomorrow to pick out things to borrow. She’ll be like a child in a sweet shop and hopefully we may have some of those costumes to view soon. Laura M. and the crew are also working well getting props together and sorting out who is doing what. Thanks to Gary, Karen A. and Nick P’s step father for taking on specific projects. I’ve had an initial meeting with Paul S. about lighting and Alex has kindly taken on the preparation of the text which will be projected showing the date, time and location on the ship throughout the show.
Having spoken about other people, so to my thoughts in all this. Barnstormers’ continues to astound me in the talent, enthusiasm and warmth that exudes from it. This was never going to be an easy show to direct, with it’s complex score, the sensitive nature of the story line and of course, the amount of characters and “doubling/tripling up” needed, but all this I knew. When I first saw this show, it had such an impact on me, even though the sound quality was very poor, I knew I was passionate enough to want to direct it. Since the day I found out that we had got the license to perform the show, and after the initial panic, my mind has been a logistical whirlwind of possibilities. How to simulate an 11 storey high cruise ship? How can they get changed in time to another character? How to ensure the tragic story line is deal with sensitively? Could we have a Bridge on a different level with such a small stage and low ceiling? You get the idea, and a director will always have so many things to take into consideration, regardless of the show, so nothing new there. For me, it’s a relatively new experience, having only co-directed before, and I’m actually enjoying it, for the most part anyway! The sleepless nights pondering, endless scribblings, diagrams, meetings, emails and phone calls all become so worthwhile when a scene comes together and it evokes an emotion. I’ve already had quite a few “moments” where I have been so amused or “moved” by the intensity of characterizations and interaction and we are a long way from port yet, so well done and keep it up.
Over the last couple of weeks I have been impressed with how the accents are developing, so don’t be afraid to go with them and get used to how they sound. Also, as I said, you are really working on your characterizations and to help even more, have a look over/research your character’s information, get into their psyche. Think how they would have behaved, their demeanor and how they fit in with the characters around them.
Some of you are memorizing your lines and being able to put your books down for certain parts which means that really your acting can be more animated, so now’s the time to have a go mastering one scene at a time.
I have now decided that we will go ahead with doing a Jumble Sale and Coffee Morning on Saturday 13th October to help with the costs for this show, so I’ll need loads of offers of help to make it successful. Please let me know if you can help am/pm or both, sorting, selling, in the kitchen, clearing up, taking away left overs etc and it’s first come get the choice they want regarding which stall to be on. I’ve attached a poster for displaying in windows, cars & local shops and flyers to hand around, so please print them off soon. Jumble can be brought along to rehearsals any time now. Crew, please note that this date is instead of the crew painting/preparation day.
I hope that by trying to schedule rehearsals more exactly, it helps you to know when you are needed and when you may leave although as we get further on in, this may not be quite so possible. I know that people have lives and are busy and I do appreciate your prompt time keeping. It is so helpful to me and your fellow actors and means that others are not delayed. Do keep advising me of any holidays/absences asap please, (by email,) as it is a major problem putting together a rehearsal schedule only to find that people are away on the day.
Finally, (you say,) this week goes like this;
Thursday 6th September No Hannah P, Hyder, George or Becky H.
Ruth has very kindly offered to play the piano for us so that we can refresh staging for previously learned songs
5.30-7.15pm Those who have arranged for early rehearsals with Hannah P to go into the church via the Fellowship Room and not via the main hall please. If you would still like to run through something individually, in a pair or small group, please email Hannah to arrange at email@example.com
7.30- 8.00pm All required with me (not pit singers)
Going over 2f – 2K
8.00- 8.20pm Jig dance refresh with Margaret. All ladies in this needed, not spectating men though.
8.00- 8.20pm James and Stephen to work on accents with Bob – Act 1 Scene 5
8.00- 8.50pm Gary, Officers, Seb & Nick H to work alone on their scenes and learn lines when not needed, under the command of your Captain!
8.20- 8.50pm All in Act 1 Scene 5 – Lady’s Maid with me to refresh staging of the scene and song.
8.50- 9.05pm Break
9.05- 9.30pm Dancing with Margaret all in “Dressed in your Pyjamas”
9.05- 9.30pm James & Paul with me Act 1 Scene 7 refresh
9.30-10.00pm All in Act 1 Scene 9 to go over the scene for tomorrow’s run through.
Friday 7th September No Hyder, George, Clare J, Becky H or Beth
Please go and see Paul Harrington to have your photo taken if you missed out before and he will be taking shots of you in action during the Act 1 run-through. Becky K you will need your Darlene costume and photo taken. Russell will be filming for rehearsal purposes and thanks to them both.
7.30- 7.40pm Paula S & Keith with Hannah P for “The Glinka 1”
7.30-7.50pm James with me to refresh staging for “Barrett’s Song”
7.40- 7.50pm Hannah M with Hannah P for “The Glinka 2” (can the word “glass” be changed to “drape” please as this will be done in front of the curtains)
7.50- 8.15pm Paula S & Keith with me refreshing staging of “The Glinka 1” & 17b “I Have Danced”
7.50- 8.15pm James, Ann, Louisa, Matt, Gary, John C, Nick P, Hannah M, Seb with Hannah P for Scene 9 solo parts (as much as can be managed)
8.15- 8.30pm All in “Doing The Latest Rag” dancing and singing with Margaret & Hannah P.
8.30- 8.45pm Early break
8.45-10.00pm Run through of Act 1 -Good luck everyone, give it your all.