I think it’s safe to say I went into this whole thing with an uneasy mixture of excitement, apprehension and toe curling terror.
I won’t go as far to say I secretly hoped I wouldn’t get cast but I was truly scared when the offer came through. Nevertheless, I’m determined to make a success of it as I believe in myself, the director and now, definitely in the rest of the company.
Day 2 of rehearsals was a fascinating experience. As with any disparate group, learning to work together is important. With Troilus and Cressida especially, which has a plethora of action, relationships and movement, knowing instinctively what others are doing becomes positively essential.
We played several games, with the obligatory set of bean bag balls (no theatre company is complete without one) but then moved on to moving around in the space.
This was very instructive as we listened to the ‘heartbeat’ of the room and began to flow in unison even when there was no intention to do so. Really wonderful and relaxing at the same time.
Getting into the text after lunch was our first delve into one of the plays. Ideas starting ricocheting off the walls (quite often landing in Ricky’s Ideas Box where they were left to wither and die) and the opening scene concept began to evolve. The audience are going to be taken straight out of any comfort zone, before they’ve even sat down… although a few may be rewarded with cake for the inconvenience!
I am still very nervous, especially about T&C but I have to say the cast are so supportive but frighteningly talented. They’ll keep me afloat before I reach any ‘drowning not waving’ stage and I’m so grateful.
I have and will put in so much work as even though I’ve never been a fan of Shakespeare, I’m keeping an open mind and as am determined to contribute to what is an enlightening experience.
Indeed, If the amount of sweat pouring from the cast and director is anything to go by, this will be an utterly amazing production. Just be careful not to slip on the floor though…!
Good times, it’s Day 2. Proud to say we are not only emerging unscathed from the high temperatures of the rehearsal room provided by this delightful summer weather, but we may very well be acclimating to it. The day began with some glimpses of ‘images of inspiration’, kinda like a theatrical version of a Vision Board, where we examine some sample themes captured in pictures or single striking images, which we can then digest and produce within the production. This is an important jumping off point for the process as it will eventually shape elements of the visuals and the overall aesthetic. Too often you see a Shakespeare piece that sticks a gimmick on for gimmicks sake, (Romeo & Juliet….in SPACE!, Prehistoric Macbeth etc.) But it is refreshing to see for us as performers and eventually for the spectator to see that every decision made here will come from a place of purpose.
As the day continued, we examined walking, not in an etiquette-school sense, but rather how we, as a group of 16, can share a performance space, aware of not only ourselves, but each other. It’s a useful tool for the “real world” too; making navigating King’s Cross station at rush hour a collision free experience. In addition, it always surprises me how much energy and muscle tension it takes to walk slow.
I just Googled Romeo and Juliet in Space. It exists. The more you know.