Henry V Rehearsals Day 13

Happy Bonfire Night Everyone!
I have just got back from flyering for the show on the Southbank with the lovely Rosanna, and despite the freezing temperatures I actually really enjoyed it. It gave us a chance to meet people, observe their reactions and to note how they feel at the thought of such a production. It is a very interesting social experiment. Londoners can spot a flyerer a mile off, it’s like a little alarm goes off in their ears saying, ‘danger, danger!! Avert avert!’ And they then proceed to walk in a circular motion as far away from you as possible. I felt like a leper. But we are all guilty of it, assuming it’s for a club or a takeaway. By assuming, however, you may miss something really exciting. I will make a mental note for that in the future.
Although, so many more people were intrigued and took a flyer than didn’t. One couple walked briskly away as I spoke to them and a little way past me the woman stopped and came back. ‘I’m sorry, did you just say an all-female cast of Henry V?’ I nodded and then showed her the flyer. ‘It’s only just sunk in what you actually said, I’d love to have one thank you’ Then, as luck would have it I offered a flyer without realising to an old university friend who also did Drama and now works at the National theatre and we hD a wonderful conversation about it. Then there was also someone who knew the Director Ricky Dukes and a girl who said she had a friend in the production. It really makes you realise how small the theatre world is, and how important it is to get out there and meet people and talk about it in person as that may be the extra effort that someone needs in order to actually purchase a ticket.
Today, admittedly, rehearsals were hard for all involved. But I always see it as a colouring book, when you first begin you can colour at will in large sweeping like motions and there is something really satisfying about filling in an empty page with a block of colour. However, when you get closer to finishing the picture, more care has to be taken and decisions of detail have to be made to make sure you don’t colour over the lines. This takes longer and is more painstaking the closer you get to the end because you want to get it right and the final product begins to really matter to the artist.
We seemed to have struggled a little with the muscularity of the text, getting lost in stage directions and logistics. However for both to work and especially for the director to know what could work, both of these elements need as much time and effort taken over them as eachother. Having said this, it is easy to forget just how far we have come as we get used to what we see. Things that got me really excited today was seeing Tewkesbury’s transformation and development of character suddenly blast into action. As well as this, the movement of the troops from Southampton to France will be beautiful and intriguing to watch  and the use of light and darkness in Henry’s haunting scenes, which are completely original to Lazarus’s production, create an extremely disturbing and eerie effect. Lastly, and very befitting of the poem below and why we celebrate bonfire night – the treacherous traitors have been found out and justice will see them fall!
Remember, remember the fifth of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason, why gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, guy, t’was his intent
To blow up king and parliament.
Three score barrels were laid below
To prove old England’s overthrow.
By God’s mercy he was catch’d
With a darkened lantern and burning match.
So, holler boys, holler boys, Let the bells ring.
Holler boys, holler boys, God save the king
L.G (6 Days till P-Day…)

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