Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Day 10

Blog is Back

It was good to get back to work tonight. The cast has been out of town for the past week, and they came back sharp. It really says something about actors if they can walk away for seven days from rehearsals only two weeks in, and they come back without missing a step. Actually, they’re completely off book now, so they’re in better shape than when we last met.

Over the break, I thought a lot about my approach to this script. Am I being too minimal? Too bare? I went back to the script. In the playwright’s notes, I was struck by these passages : “There are no costume changes”, “There are no props”, “There are no sound effects…”, “There should be no attempt to depict the various locations of the play…”. I realized, then, that it is as I’ve thought all along. Story and character, stripped bare to allow only those things to shine through. One last thing Hatcher mentions : “Our goal was to create something rich and theatrical out of something spare and austere, so that by play’s end…the audience could be awed not only by what we had done, but what they had imagined”. What they imagined…

We’ve been doing this little exercise where they run through the show in ten minutes, then five, then two, then one. It’s interesting what we find in running the show that fast. It forces the actors to choose the plot points they think are integral to the show. It allows them, through sheer abandon, to find certain physical traits they might not otherwise, to find pacing that might have been overlooked. It also helps them to bond, to continue to forge this tie of trust. It builds upon their natural chemistry. Plus, it’s flat out hilarious. I love watching these two.

This week: working through the play scene by scene. Next week: RUNS!

See you tomorrow

Thanks for reading my blog

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