Flower Power - Readthrough #1 and Meet the Beatles!

We have officially started our rehearsals for Flower Power! We started our day with kids getting their scripts and then sitting down for a readthru before the song “Flower Power” was taught.

The readthru can be difficult for some, as they’ve never seen the script before and don’t really have time to preview (or pre-read) their lines ahead of time.  On top of that, when we do a period play, some of the language is unfamiliar to our cast.  For example, this time around, the word “kook” tripped up some cast members.  Sometimes, when we have some absent actors, I end up reading a part or two, and even I find myself tripping over words and I’ve already read the script – more than once! However, despite any difficulties the kids also get into character.  For example, Peter, who is playing Lester, said all his lines with a British accent (which is required for that role) and Anna, who is playing Starpetal, really emoted during her lines.  These things are hard to do upon a first reading and all our cast members did really well.

How did our cast members react to the play? Well I hope they liked it – it sure seemed like it.  There are definitely some jokes in there that we are going to have to explain, but I think that by the time tech week rolls around our actors will know a lot more about 1960s culture!

After the readthru the soloists in “Flower Power” worked with Will, while Bella and I played two games of Zip, Zap, Zop with the rest of our cast.  I think I explained this theater game in a blog during the fall show, so I won’t do that again, but I will say that it’s a fun energy passing game that requires focus.  Also, I was recently talking to a friend of mine who is a music teacher (not at the same school where I work, though) and he started telling me a story that involved this game.  He paused and looked at me and said, “Do you know the game Zip, Zap, Zop?”  I was honestly a little offended – I am a grown-up theater kid after all!  I told him that not only did I know it, but I used it while teaching, too – at which point he was like, “Oh, of course you do” – duh!

We then brought the whole cast together and Will taught the rest of “Flower Power.” Hearing the ensemble sing – in harmony – was so nice.  It’s a really good start to a fun show and I hope that everyone ends up loving this show as much as I do.

Okay, I should probably stop and explain my love of the 1960s… growing up I listened to the music that my dad played.  Sure, he played some 80s stuff (ask him what I used to call The Bangles and Boy George), but he mostly played oldies.  In the car, we almost always listened to Oldies 103.3 (a station I still miss dearly).  On tv, I watched a lot of reruns and my favorites when I was really young were “The Monkees” and “Batman” (also “Happy Days,” but that was a 70s show about the 50s so ignore that one).  I also really loved “I Dreamed of Jeannie” and “Bewitched” and “Gilligan’s Island.”  As a result of all this, I am well versed in 1960s pop culture.  I’m not an expert, but I’m always willing to learn more and I hope our kids are too!  I will leave you with this video and a fun fact!  This is The Beatles’ first appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and during this same episode, the company of “Oliver!” performed some songs.  Playing the Artful Dodger was David Jones, an actor/singer who in a couple of years would be one “The Monkees.”

That's all for now - see you Saturday,

- Debbi