Letters to Holly

Wednesday, November 19

Rehearsal Nine: Cold Comfort

The director called the cast after Monday's rehearsal to ask if we could change the Saturday shows into matinees. We learn later that this was traditional for Christmas shows because they so often featured a large kid contingent, and bedtimes trumped showtimes. I have no problem doing an afternoon Christmas show, but it seems counter to our greatest rationale for nabbing the new performance space: Patrons could access easy parking at night, grab dinner, and stroll to the show. I suppose they could just reverse that and eat after.

We start with Act Two tonight. The director is still unsure about character rationale, and I figure out why I'm so dismayed about this show so far. I advocated it in committee. I'm emotionally invested it in beyond my norm.

It's a better night. Many of us are trying to avoid our handheld scripts, and we all stumble a bit. I run my Act Two ghost lines without the script of the first time, to my relief. To prepare for my costume limitations, I kept my head bowed for those scenes. The costume is opaque, and my head will be hidden. I can't make eye contact to cue myself or others. I will have to rely on sound. The cold warehouse space helps me make ghost noises. I decide to cut back on Cratchit's timidity to speed up those lines. I can suggest his meek nature, but I do want him more confident when he speaks of Tiny Tim's ailment.

We run the whole play in reverse order and stretch past our planned rehearsal time. I don't mind at all. During my extensive Act One downtime (I spend 40 pages just sitting onstage) I sketch out ideas for this show's magnet.

Your Sis leaves today for Raleigh, and it's the bachelor life for me. I watched UNC roll past Kentucky last night after the rehearsal, and it was a late night for both of us.

Picture of the Day
A new image from Where the Wild Things Are, a film that might never see the light of day. The studio thinks it's too dark.

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