This week we wanted to focus on running through our act as realistically as possible. In the past couple rehearsals, we’d introduced blocking and stage fighting, but these transitions often took up more time than we’d have liked them to. Today, we really stressed that all the students should be reading along to the script even if they weren’t acting at that moment so that they knew when to come on or off stage. This really helped us cut down on time, and we were able to get through our whole act in only 15 minutes. However, this might be because Christina, one of our slower readers, wasn’t there today.
This week, we had Dale (Sir Andrew), Rufus (Sebastian), Charles (Malvolio), Talia (Olivia), and Jacob (Sir Toby). We had them play the same parts they usually did. Jacob, Maddie, and I stepped in for the other roles like Maria/Mario and the clown. Charles seemed a little confused by the roles and wanted to know when they would be finalized. We explained to everyone that the show is a week from Friday, and that while we hoped the roles would be pretty much stable until then, they might change depending on who showed up. We took this moment to explain to them that we only had one more rehearsal after today, so they should act as if it was the real show.
This week went really well. Everyone seemed really comfortable on stage and was paying attention so they knew when to come on or off stage. We also brought a couple props and costumes, and I think having a tangible reminder of the show really helped to motivate them. Our biggest struggle was keeping Dale motivated. During the first run through, he was pretty enthusiastic. However, during our second un through he began to get restless and wanted to know how much more he had to read. This is pretty consistent with the other rehearsals. Once he realizes we’re reading the same lines again, he seems to lose interest. He also was very thrown off by Christina’s absence. Jacob originally stepped into the clown’s role, but Dale was confused because the clown was usually played by a female. In order to get him to keep reading his lines, I had to take Jacob’s place as the clown.
Maddie ended up playing the clown in one of the later scenes, and when she didn’t know the tune to one of the Taylor Swift songs, Charles surprised us all with his performance of Bad Blood. It was one of my favorite moments from the rehearsal. Another funny thing that happened was the way in which Rufus kept track of his lines. While other students were reading their lines, he would follow along by using the tip of his sword to underline the words. I didn’t realize this until later on in the rehearsal, but once I did it was hard to stop smiling. Overall, this was a really good rehearsal. I’m curious to see if we’ll be able to pace ourselves just as quickly once Christina returns. For our next (and last) rehearsal, we might want to cut down on a couple more lines to save on time. We did this during the last work day as well.