We had a productive week at NDW. Lisa went over the “Merry Life” dance while Cindy and I went through blocking. We are in the fair scene! That’s huge – that’s scene 3 in a show where Scene 1 might as well be worth 3 scenes all on it’s own. Now the fair scene is also a really big scene, and as the weeks go on we will have to layer it. It would be impossible to give the actors all the blocking for that scene at once, so it’s great that we started it.
Cindy also went over the Entr’acte with members of our cast and I did more fight choreography, giving a huge tutorial on fighting with quarterstaffs, which is something we only get to do when our play is Robin Hood. And of course, there was time for some improv as well! Late for Work is always a fun game to play.
One thing that I want to talk about this week is complacency. Normally, our tech week would be about a month away and we’d be two more rehearsals into the show. This time around, we have 2 months until tech week, which more than makes up for starting 2 weeks later than usual. However, this is the time when all of us, directors, actors, parents, need to realize that we still need to go full steam ahead, despite the fact that it feels like we can relax.
Compare this show to the fall show. We had somewhere around 8 weeks to pull the whole thing off. That’s about the amount of time left to rehearse Robin Hood. The staff picked Mirror Image because we knew we could get it done in a short rehearsal period and that costumes and the set would be relatively easy to pull off in that amount of time. So all of us are thrilled to have so much more time this spring to work on our show.
However, this is when we get in trouble. While it’s great that we’re into the 3rd scene and all the music’s been learned, there’s still a lot to do and a lot to fix in the blocking that’s already been done. We need to forge ahead, but it’s easy to forget that when there is so much time left. This works for lines, too. Our actors may be thinking that they don’t need to start working on memorization yet, especially with other school plays coming up sooner and other activities, in general. This line of thinking is a mistake.
Trust me, this play will sneak up on all of us if we aren’t careful. In fact, I can’t believe that March starts this week. Where did February go? Forget February, where did January go? Before you know it we will be in April and will have a week off from NDW for a holiday break.
Having said all this, what can you do to prevent us from becoming complacent and to help us all be ready come tech week? That’s simple. Don’t take the time we have for granted. Start working on your lines now. Make sure everything gets done before it’s too late. At our end, we will keep plugging away. If we’re lucky (and I think we could be) we will be running this show before we get to tech week. Can you imagine not needing to block a single thing at Wilson? Can you imagine having the dances learned perfectly before tech week? And memorization – I mean, come on! Lyrics and lines will be so memorized by the time we get to Wilson that no one will have to call line. Can you imagine all of that? (I mean, yes, adjustments will have to made once we get into our performance space, but that will be so much easier if everything else is in place.) Good, now let’s make it a reality. Let’s continue to work hard and to enjoy all the time we have at Cole, because before you know it, we will be in April and then in May, and then NDW will be over for the year. (Sorry 8th graders.) Let’s use the time we have to make this our best show yet! We need to work together, all of us: actors, staff, parents. But that’s what we excel at. Are you with me? On 3: 1, 2, 3 – NDW!!!!!