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May 26, 2017:

THE GASLIGHT TREATMENT

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, it was another long day and evening of double duty directing. It began with a bit of double duty drama, but I let others deal with it because I cannot cloud my head with such things. I only got about six hours of sleep, had an early telephonic conversation, then got ready, picked up the previous day’s packages, then went to rehearsal.

It began with choreography and music review, then I ran scenes for ninety minutes, cleaning, adding, subtracting, all the usual things one does. Then our lighting and set person arrived and we did our designer run-through – it was fairly smooth for the first two-thirds, and then got sloppy in the final third. But I’m liking the way things flow into each other and the story beats seem very clear to me, which is the major thing we needed to adjust. After the run, I spent time cleaning up that final third. The more we run stuff the more secure the actors get, and that’s what I’m wanting to have happen – that security so they’re not fumfering for lines or blocking or choreography. It’s a really top-notch cast, I must say.

Just before I began my part of the rehearsal day I’d gotten a call from Richard Sherman, just saying he was thinking about me and couldn’t wait for us to be together again – so sweet. After rehearsal I went back to the mail place and picked up whatever was there so I wouldn’t have to stop there in the morning. Then I moseyed on over to the Eclectic Café and had a small Caesar salad and risotto with chicken – very yummilicious.

Then it was on to the Dial ‘M’ for Murder rehearsal. My usual assistant director wasn’t with us and our producer was filling in. We reviewed what we’d done the previous night and it was somewhat frustrating as there was blocking that wasn’t remembered or clear and I kept asking what it was supposed to be and the producer kept telling me it wasn’t in the script – she had two – the small French edition in which only the little changes we’re doing are written in, and the big Xerox copy. I kept asking and asking and kept being told that there was no blocking written down. I couldn’t believe it, really and I shouldn’t have. We pretty much recreated the forgotten bits but at the end of the evening my assistant director came and sure enough every single bit of blocking was notated in the big script, plain and clear as day. I had to bite my tongue and I do mean bite my tongue. Perhaps she was gaslighting me. So, when they convene on Saturday to do line-throughs, they’ll also walk the scenes we reviewed so the assistant director can make sure it’s all correct.

It was Doug Haverty’s first night of blocking and we got quite far into his first scene. I’m having fun blocking this show, which I’ve designed as a kind of dance between the various characters, which is really visually interesting to do. After we wrapped, I finally came home, where I had a ton of e-mails to answer, which I did.

Today, I will, of course, rehearse all the livelong day – haven’t decided about a run-through since we’ll be missing some actors. After, I’ll probably come home and do stuff until about seven, at which point I’ll head over to the Pantages Theater to see some Beach Boys thing with David Wechter. The other option is that I’ll just head over there right after rehearsal, find a parking place and then walk somewhere for a meal, or even over to Amoeba to kill time. We shall see.

Tomorrow we rehearse – again I’ll be missing several actors, so I think I’ll just be drilling scenes and music, which is good for the actors and gives me the chance to work details with the actors. Sunday is more of the same, and thankfully I should have both Saturday and Sunday evenings all to my very own self. Monday is our day off – I have to go meet the actor who couldn’t meet last Monday, otherwise I just have to catch up on a few things but mostly get some absolutely necessary relaxation and rest. Then Tuesday we begin serious run-through days and our composer/lyricst/co-book writer will join us for the duration.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, rehearse, eat, see a show, and relax. Today’s topic of discussion: It’s Friday – what is currently in your CD player or your DVD/Blu and Ray player? I’ll start – CD, mucho Shostakovich. No DVD/Blu for me right now. Your turn. Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, wondering if I was receiving the gaslight treatment?

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