Alice’s blog – No 2

The first week of rehearsals consists, as is often the case, of reading and talking about the script rather than diving straight into the action, physically. Around the table, of course, sit the cast, the director, the assistant (if not running other errands, or not being hired in the first place), and, often, the Deputy Stage Manager (DSM). We do not have a DSM, we have one Stage Manager, the assiduous Sarah Cannings, who will be running the show as soon as we get into the performance venue at the beginning of June.

Reading rehearsals are a very interesting time; filled with conversations about and analysis of the characters, formulating the time lines of the events (occasional detective work is required), finding the regularly hidden meanings of words, sentences, entire passages in the play… Occasionally the company finds itself in deep debate as much over details as over more general, tangential thoughts. And, particularly as we are dealing with the comedy Happy New, laughter erupts across the table (which, let’s face it, is always nice) with Joel exclaiming: ‘Top lols!’

It was during one of the ‘top lols’ this week, that something very fundamental occurred to me: One of the reasons people working in theatre have a lot of joy in their lives – often regardless of the struggles they are facing – is because of the creativity we use on a daily basis. By taking a deep and thorough look at the world we are momentarily creating onstage, we understand more about the world we all inhabit, the one outside of theatre and rehearsal rooms.

We do this every time we rehearse, in different productions with completely different sets of people, using imagination to explore and create. How satisfactory it is to do so!

So after our final, and invigorating, rehearsal for the week on Friday, I set off home with many emails and phone calls to make over the weekend, and also feeling happy and satisfied.

This thought goes in tandem with my wonderful neighbour Chris always calling after me when I leave his flat after a cup of coffee: ‘Stay happy, stay creative’.

With that, I release you into and wish you a very happy weekend. I’ll be writing to you again at the beginning of next week, after some of us will have been staring at chickens in the flesh (or the feather?). But more about that then…

Has anyone spotted a rubber chicken head, yet?

Let me know, and until then: Stay happy, stay creative!

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