Tuesday, April 8, 2008

another rehearsal night

We had another night at Mercy Seat tonight, and after hammering out some details of schedules, we started with an acting exercise in which I am not a huge believer - improvisation. We put on scripts on the table, and we improvised our way through the beginning of the show. The director said that she wanted us to find the tone of two people talking "for real" instead of two actors being "theatrical" with each other. I'm never sure if improv is a useful technique, and when we started working on the script, I wasn't so sure of the value of that exercise. We worked slowly through the first twenty pages or so of the script, with our director trying to find and pull out the honesty of each specific moment of the show. The work is getting a little exhausting, constantly going to those same dark emotional places over and over. The rehearsal process is very much like a film shoot, replaying moments several times before moving on completely. It's a long-ass script, and it's a long show to be doing that, but it's an effective way to mine everything that can be gotten out of every moment in the play. We're still about two weeks away from tech, so we have the time to play around and explore. I'm still trying to apply what I've learned at Cedar Crest with Tim Brown, but it's a little more challenging in a more "realistic" play where I am onstage the entire time. Not an excuse, by any stretch, but a realization.

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