And the final entry about Every Christmas Story Ever Told!! comes from Chris Korte:
This production was a very special, unique, and fun experience. The show consisted of a series of skits thrown together by the actors (as in the characters, not us), changing at such a rapid pace and they had to constantly check in with each other in order to figure out what the heck was going on.
Well, the real life experience was not all that different.
We rehearsed this in two very fast weeks and Bam! we were performing in Williamston. We closed on a Sunday and on Monday we had our one day of rehearsal on the Meadowbrook stage. Then we performed on Monday- Wednesday there and on Friday we were rehearsing on the Tecumseh Center stage just hours before we opened there. With new staging. Which reminded me of the old staging. So much that on Opening Night there I repeatedly found myself on a dark part of the stage staring at the lit up part where I was supposed to be standing. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in Tecumseh passed and on Monday we were back at Meadowbrook. The last three days passed with minimal incidents and on the closing Wednesday we recieved a standing ovation from a crowd of hundreds. It was exhilarating and beautiful.
It was a crazy time and it was full of laughter. The audiences were always wonderful, but the laughs we had outside of the performance were top notch. Working with Joey and Aral gave me a sense of what life must of been like for the Three Stooges. They gave me such confidence on stage that I knew I couldn’t single-handedly ruin the show. I knew that if I fell off of the second level of the stage at Meadowbrook that one of them would catch me (though I think that’s just a metaphor). They were both amazing to work with. Lynn Lammers was awesome back stage setting up our 50 prop and costume changes (50 might be an understatement). Erica and Terry came through on the boards, sometimes making an impromtu adjustment based on mishaps we had on stage.
Last of all, I got to work with Tony Caselli. He’s cool. I don’t know how many directors could pull off what he did in such a short period of time. And if people like him are a dime a dozen then I’ll proudly live in a state of denial.
So thank you Tony. Thank you Aral and Joey. Thanks to everyone involved in the production, and thanks to all the people who came out and enjoyed the show. (and if you paid for the tickets thanks to all the people who came out and didn’t enjoy the show)
And if you all wish real hard every night for the next 11 months… we might even come back and do it again.
Chris was an absolute joy to work with on this show – it was the first time I’d gotten the opportunity to direct him, and I hope that there are many more collaborations in our future.
Well, that wraps up our series of entries from the holiday show! I have to say that the whole experience – rehearsals, performances, collaborating with another theatre, doing “post-show journal entries” – was absolutely wonderful!
And, in other news, rehearsals began this week for Fully Committed! The show is going to be a wonderful follow up to Every Christmas Story…, it’s funny, very sweet, and nicely theatrical. I’ll begin regular updates about that process soon!
-Tony Caselli, Artistic DirectorShare