Friday, October 1, 2010


Week Five: The Week That Broke The Camel’s Back

Dear Kitty 2.0,

Alright.  Let me give you tech weekend in a nutshell.  Major costume issues.  Big ole wig issues.  Lighting/timing/quick-change/emotional/personal/existential issues.  I HAVE ISSUES!  Many, many new acting notes.  Overuse of homeopathic remedies for anxiety.  My hair falling out.  (?!)  Oh yeah, and I thought my wisdom tooth was breaking through my skull, causing tremendous pain throughout my head and neck, but it turns out (after one very expensive dentist’s visit later) that I had merely clenched my jaw so tight that I strained all the muscles in my wee face.  The dental hygienist asked me, “Are you, like, under a lot of stress right now?”  Um, yes.  I think so, yeah, maybe that’s about right...

But enough of my panic attack.  Let’s get to the punchline here...which is that we had our first preview tonight... and... it wasn’t half bad!  No, in fact, I might even venture to say that it was a half-full performance.  I was just happy to have gotten through it at all, especially since I felt like I was treading water all weekend, and earlier in the day had received some ideas about major acting adjustments for some key scenes, which can be hard to digest in time before a performance.  I still didn’t feel like I was at that ideal place of comfort where I could simply co-exist with the other actors onstage and listen and react to them totally naturally, though... but I think I might be much more comfortable tomorrow.  The first show in front of an audience is sort of terrifying, and most of the time I feel like I make it through on adrenaline alone.  But I think it was a boost of morale for everyone in the cast to see that we did, in fact, have a viable show on our hands-- not merely a mess of scenes and lighting cues and quick-changes and
“Oh-lord-where-did-I-put-that-prop?”s-- which is often what even the finest-tuned plays can feel reduced to during a tech rehearsal.

Oh, and I’m getting better at pin-curls by the day.

So, there you have it.  I feel at least six times better than I did earlier in the day, when I was still on the verge of tears for God-knows-what-reason.  I rarely become so overwhelmed by the whole rehearsal/performance process, but then again, A. I haven’t done such an emotionally draining show/role before, and B. I don’t think I’ve ever had so much stage time, and so instead of scenes being like little sprints, I sometimes feel like I’m running a marathon.  Anyways.  To bed!



decimallisa said...

We sat in the front row for tonight's performance (Fri 10/1)...and it was as if we were in the Annex with the actors...except they were not actors.

They were real people: Anne and Otto, Margot and Edith, the Van Pels and the "Dentist"...suffering through that terribly dark time under impossible circumstances. It was an incredible portrayal and I truly believe that the audience, like myself, was too moved - almost in shock - to be able to accord the actors the overwhelming curtain call they truly deserved.

Afterwards, I longed to see them, speak with them, both to reassure myself that they were all truly "OK," (not harmed); and to reassure them that their performance was befitting of the standing ovation that I had wanted to give them, but was too overcome by emotion to provide.

Simply put: that was brilliant, Molly...just brilliant.

Molly Z said...

Dear decimallisa,

Thank you for your incredibly kind comment. I'm so glad to hear that you were so moved-- what a compliment. We're fine; don't worry about us... as you can see, it's often the audience that needs a bit of time to recover after it's over. I'll be sharing this comment with the rest of the cast and our director, and I'm sure they'll be honored as well.