April 10th, 2009


Shakespeare: The Musical - Rehearsal Week 3

So this was a really intense week for rehearsals. I think that I learned more about Shakespeare in the last 3 rehearsals that I did my entire High School career (sorry Ms. Mottern).

When one thinks about Improv rehearsals, one tends to think "Zip Zap Zop" and "Logical Word Toss" and "What Are You Doing?" -- but with this show, we've actually spent a significant amount of time in chairs discussing things. Things like Shakespeare's World View, and the importance of Death in comedies versus tragedys, and how every single one of Shakespeare's characters has their own dignity. There are no (or few) caricatures, but only characters, each with their own solid sense of self (sorry Will Farrell).

We're also completely reconstruction the openings we use for our musicals, because the "opening number" really doesn't mesh well with how Shakespeare told stories. So we're experimenting with the Opening Action Sequence, which, like in many of Shakespeare's plays, consists of a throw away scene with characters we may or may not see again, who are there only to set the stage. They are there to get our attention, and tell us what's been going on in the world that we're about to explore. Their scene then leads into an opening song that is ALSO just there to tell us about our world. It's really bizarre in how liberating it is not having to worry about "Will singing this make me the protagonist?" and things like "What if I set up something too important that I don't remember later?"

On a personal note, I was completely blown away by the raw talent that this cast has. Seriously, this is rehearsal #5, and the songs that were getting cranked out were "CRAP! Why don't we have a video camera running?" good. This is going to be an awesome show.

But softing...