So what happens when the fragmented sections of rehearsals are pieced together for the first run through? Well. A collective gulp and then off we go…
…and when we come out the other end, after Blanche has softly stage whispered…
Blanche McIntyre: Aaaanddd…lights.
…we begin the debrief, the notes and reworking.
Run-throughs reveal the inner personality of what the show is looking like.
It can accent certain moments which are being given way more the weight/focus than is needed within the play.
It can reveal an inner beauty to an actors’ work which perhaps wasn’t as apparent in earlier, more fragmented sessions.
It can answer some questions which have been troubling us since week one.
It can pose new questions never thought about before.
It can give the assistant director a free half of a marmite sandwich as he might have missed lunch. Which is of course a bonus.
Either way, the first run-throughs expose all these things and more. This week we’ve used each run through to trial different things. From simply focussing on story-telling as clearly as possible, without any shade to that lightness. Or on another occasion we tried to run the show with the sole intention of upping the pace of it. These dynamics and rhythms are there to play with the orchestration of your evening out. The run-throughs test the water and grow your experience.
I’ve been sat in the production office watching the fittings this week. The collection of faces pulled by the actors in response to what is put in front of them is brilliant value. Ardman animation has competition. Really, really funny.
The choices of clothing in the show are really clever, and are made even more important by the wider set design. Oops. Nearly a spoiler there. We’re getting to know each other now though, readers, so that’s a little snippet for you. And there’s only a few days to go now after all!
I’ve been really excited to see the colour palette of the costumes taking shape alongside with the choices of fabrics. There have been endless discussions about the nature of the costumes, with open input from the actors . There is a fluid dialogue between the actors and the creative team through all the different levels of the design, which is grand.
With the risk of sounding like a shameless plug – The Jerwood Space has been a great place to work. We’ve had a fun time and our three stage managers were very obliging in providing me with the obligatory farewell American high-school jump photo.
We’re packing up our props and costumes, taking all the research off the walls and pulling the LX tape up from the floors. Stay tuned for next week where I’ll unpick some of tech week and first previews. Watch out Southampton, Headlong are coming to get you again!