Jim's Richard III Blog

What had started as a blog of Richard III rehearsal process at Cal Shakes has now evolved or devolved into a small novella. The author is petrified to change the name for fear it'll disappear, and wouldn't know what to call it anyway. Many stories are included and questions are even answered sometimes!

Friday, April 11, 2008

ZVSP Opening Night

Ahhhh. At long last it is upon us! At long last we will see if my really cheesy fake moustache and soul patch will stay on for 90 minutes of sheer hilarity, see if it actually will be 90 minutes of sheer hilarity, see if farting reigns supreme, see if Mr. X gets his lines right, see if I get my lines right.

We got in our first run thru's with no stops for technical or actor glitches last night--did 2 runs with a 20 minute break in between giving the crew time to reset the stage and props and giving the actors a rest--the crew didn't get a break as is often the case, and with the insanity of the week having reached high tide they are now pretty sure of what they are doing but tired and crabby. Can't say as I blame them.

The intensity of the crabby factor varies from person to person according to their dispositions, but the tired factor seems pretty Universal--a viscous bug hit the cast and nailed me early in the week but I had the sense to the Doctor right away as I knew it was bad; Keta, our female lead, caught it a day or so later and has a raw throat, a cough and is belting out her songs nonetheless though I know it's costing her.

But we got through it--twice. Yaaaay. Wahoo. I've still no idea what an audience will think though we did have a few invited guests last night--we go into the audience on several occasions and some were smiling, some weren't. Not a clue as to what the ratio of smiling/non smiling was.

Rider has thrown about everything into the mix he can--we now have a hearse parked out front and a 12' tall red devil in the lobby; he'd ordered wind up bats at one time to try flying into the audience to terrify them; most wouldn't fly at all and the ones that did posed a danger of blinding audience members as they weren't soft bats. The backstage and dressing room areas are now filled with the effluvia of horror--yesterday I saw a dummy called "Donna the Dead" (Get it? Dawn Of....oh, never mind) with a sticker pricing her at $200.00.

We have an entire table of unholy accessories backstage and it's littered with buggy eyeballs, fake rotten teeth (Rider had wanted Sam to try these but they discovered that you couldn't have fake rotten teeth and a lateral lisp--Sam's salivary glands nearly exploded they were so confused, and the lisp was ultimately deemed the more desirable of the two. Thank you God.), horns, whistles, pom-poms, fat suits (oh! big disaster last night--the zipper on the back of the gorilla suit broke), large fuzzy spiders, wigs, beards, nasty fingernails, and fart machines. A veritable panoply of weird odds and ends which is constantly in the way and being pawed through by X to further grace his characters.

I put together some small gift baskets together for cast and crew excluding as much sugary stuff as I could--it's going to be crazy enough without the sugar factor--and am signing off now to fill out the rest of my cards.

Wish us Luck, and as the French would say:



Blogger alexae said...

Yea, break legs Jim!

April 12, 2008 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger James Carpenter said...

Thanks, Guys!

April 12, 2008 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger marshlady said...

so possible endings for play within play:

Positive: Actors returns home with renewed sense of self, singing uplifting finale' "So I may *look* like a Nazi...but at least I know I am free" ...(punch Nazi...)

less positive: Sam ends up shooting everyone after going over the edge with the entire tooth/lisp thing, but Mr X who was buying a Snickers at the vending machine at the time, manages to survive

or surreal: actor wakes up to find it was all a dream, he is really in a production of Midsummer nights dream and someone has merely put something in his tea...but wait, is that a pair of red panties he has on...


April 13, 2008 at 11:41 AM  

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