Wednesday, January 9, 2008

First reading of "Spitfire Grill"

Was technically last night, so this blog is a little late, but whatever. It was really great to be heading north again up to Cedar Crest. I have been looking forward to this show for, quite literally, months, and I was completely overwhelmed by the idea that I would be starting it in only a matter of hours. I had to force myself not to listen to the CD on the entire drive, but I did go over my script before that reading. When I go into the first reads, I sometimes feel a little bit of pressure to "perform." Every book or director will say that it is just a first attempt, and there is nothing to prove, but I always like to come into the reads with at least one or two moments that I've given a little bit of thought to. I'll have those next few days on my feet to mutter the words as I bury my nose in the script, so that first reading is a chance to hear the moment play out for the first time.

Reading this one, I was struck right away by how funny the show is. It's that humor that often doesn't read too well on the page, but once you can hear several voices saying the words, the jokes pop to life. After the reading, we talked about the show for a little bit, discussing the history of the show and a little bit about the themes in the play. Then afterwards, I hung out with Tim in his office and we talked for a little over an hour, catching up on things that were going on. It really did feel like coming home after being away for a little, and I am thrilled beyond words to work on this show. Tim pointed out that this is technically an area premiere of the show, and as soon as I heard the score I knew I needed to be involved in this show. If it was being done, I wanted to be a part of it.

Our next six hours of rehearsal is an ambitious attempt to create a "very rough" staging for the entire show, from which point we'll go into focused musical rehearsals before pulling the scenes into sharper focus. That way, we'll have a framework in place right away from which we can work. Very exciting!

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