Victor brought in fresh scripts for the actors. The script is getting pretty close to lock and we wanted to get fresh copies to everyone as we go into our five day break over the holidays. With all the changes that have happened it’s important that everyone is on the same page with the text changes as they go off to memorize. It will be imperative to this process that the actors come in and hit the ground running after the break. We used this same schedule when we did Hostages and I loved it. Hostages, like BRIDESBURG, had a very intense two weeks and then had 5 days off to gestate and then come back and jump into running the show. But if we take a step back over the break, we will be in big trouble. This schedule only works if the actors are doing work on their own. It’s a great opportunity to let things settle into the subconscious. But that takes a constant relationship with the script. If any of us don’t do anything over the break, we will be knee deep in a pile of shit.
We got right to it today and finished the stumble through of the show. There are some really wonderful moments taking shape and I’m very excited by the story being told. Victor set out to write a group of characters that aren’t seen on stage, LORT stages in particular, and he’s done just that.
I feel like the Brits have a greater breadth of the classes on their stages. We are heavily middle to upper class on American stages with a smattering of drug attics and white trash mixed in. These characters are none of those things. They’re working class people struggling to make it. There’s a lot of Odets in this play for me. More along the lines of Awake and Sing then say, Waiting for Lefty.
To take inspiration from Odets, I need to bring my awareness to where Matt’s love is. There’s a lot of love in Awake and Sing, which is what makes the story so beautiful and heartbreaking, even though it’s set against the backdrop of the depression. Our characters are facing a different depression, even though they’re living in 2005, but like Odets’ characters they must love. Even though we’re in dark dark times, there has to be something that pushes us.
Tomorrow we’ve got our first run through. I’m looking forward to getting out on the floor and making choices, failing and learning. That will make the second run through of the day that much more informative.