Thursday, August 23, 2012

Prop by Prop Putting It Together

August 23, 2012

By Nathan Norcross
Playhouse Directing Intern

Various Harbor props
One of the most difficult transition periods in a rehearsal process is the move from the rehearsal room into the theatre, when the outline of the staircase taped out to the rehearsal room floor with precision becomes, in fact, an actual staircase on the set for actors to navigate. The same can be said of rehearsal furniture and rehearsal props. For this reason, actors always prefer working with the performance furniture and props as early in their process as possible, though sometimes this luxury is simply not possible.

Fortunately we are blessed with a stellar support staff and the unique opportunity to rehearse Harbor here at the Playhouse campus, so we have been working with many of the items that will appear in the production for well over a week before our transition from the rehearsal room into the theatre space. 

As we continue our process of discovery in rehearsal, new props are added daily. Our stage manager puts those requests in his daily Rehearsal Report and we have those props the very next day to work with in rehearsal. The actors in Harbor utilize dozens upon dozens of props throughout the play, contrasted with the ONE prop used earlier this season in The Year Of Magical Thinking. Having each of those props available for the actors to incorporate into their process and become comfortable with helps to ensure they can focus on the world of the play, rather than the world of the theatre, on opening night.  

Take a peek at the Harbor video (2:53)!

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