I love watching actors make discoveries.
All of the homework, preparation and forethought that go into what we do are essential. Still, a moment of inspiration in rehearsal, a flash of “OH!” from an actor, and marvelous things can happen.
We’re approaching the end of the play, now, in rehearsals. The big confrontation has been worked, and now we’re pounding away at the moments following it. John and Tobin are discovering great things, and really fleshing out these two guys. Today, a simple “Let’s sit with this discovery for a moment” completely changed a scene in the play, and the guys dove in headfirst. It was twice as funny, twice as moving, and more effectively told the story, which was even better. It’s a bonus for a director to have actors who’ll try anything, throw away whatever isn’t working, and come in with their homework and suggestions ready to go.
By afternoon tomorrow (Thursday) we’ll have rough-blocked the entire thing, and we’ll be stumbling-through the whole play. I’m very much looking forward to seeing the traffic flow, and if we’re using the space well enough yet (which I’m pretty sure we’re not, but we’ll fix that before too long!). Also looking forward to seeing it as a whole, so I can gauge the “peaks and valleys” in the story from the standpoint of emotional stakes, pace, volume and movement.