Thursday night was our first opening performance of TOS at a park in Lansdowne. Well, it wasn’t really a park. It was more like a lawn. More like a back lawn, really. A big green space between two buildings and near a rush-hour heavy road. As the time for the show approached, we anxiously waited for the audience to appear and the traffic to disappear. Our first show started strong, although I completely misjudged how much time it would take to reach the stage in my first entrance. Although too early was much better than too late, and I was forced to spend some time spinning around on the stage as I waited for the music to end so I could start acting. But aside from that little mix-up, the show went very well. The weather was warm but comfortable, especially after the sun went down. I thought it was strange that the hottest and most uncomfortable spot was the backstage area where the actors were waiting to go on. It was pleasant onstage, and there was a nice breeze blowing through the lawn.
The audience was very responsive, laughing at all the jokes and in all the right places. I could hear the laughter of some of my friends very clearly, and it really made me proud to hear them laughing so hard at the jokes on which they had given me advice. Like it just made the whole performance pay off for those moments. My buddy also complimented me again when we went out to the bar, saying that he was impressed with the work I did in this show. He also expressed surprise at the power and strength of my voice, saying that he didn’t know I had “such a set of pipes.” I’m the first one to talk in the show, and he was impressed at first by the acoustics in the space. But when he had to work a little harder to hear some other actors, he realized that my voice was just that powerful.
We have a show tonight in a larger and nicer space out in West Chester, and then another on Saturday night in what is promised to be our “most challenging” space of all. Apparently, our performance space is going to be much smaller than the one in which we were rehearsing, so we might need to go out there early on Saturday before the show to re-block a few moments and walk through certain sequences. That’s always one of the fun parts about touring theatre.