Tuesday, February 27, 2007

All Together Now

A lot has happened this week, and it's only Tuesday.

Last night we moved into the space. After a tour of the theatre by Leland, the building manager, we launched into a line run. The first day off-book is always nerve-wracking, but I was impressed -- amazed, in fact -- at how far along the cast is with their lines. Even the heavy lifters were at least 80% off-book. Kudos, everybody. It makes my job -- and yours -- a whole lot easier from here on in.

Monday also saw visits from Theresa, our production manager; Melissa, our costume designer; and Sue, our hair & makeup lady. Plus the cast met Helen, our new Soothsayer. A busy day, but spirits were high as we wrapped things up at 10.

Tonight, we launched back into scene work. I started with a Soothsayer scene, to get Helen acquainted to the layout of the stage. I also wanted to revisit Cleopatra's coterie of ladies, to observe how they interact -- and this turned out to be not so easy, as two of them weren't there. But we managed to get a lot done anyway.

What really seemed to work well tonight was sending actors off to work in pairs. Kieran and Denny worked out a petty rivalry between Enobarbus and Ventidius that really clarified the opening of the play. And Monica and Vanessa worked together to give Eros his hands full when delivering messages to Cleopatra. It's great to see the cast supporting one another, taking risks, and making discoveries -- and much of it without any prodding from me! If this keeps up, I'll be able to slack my way through the next month and a half; this show will direct itself!

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