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November 6, 2019:

THE OVATION NOMINATIONS

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, something I thought would never happen has happened.  I’ve been involved in LA theater since the 1960s.  I have acted in, written, and directed in plays and musicals for close to fifty years.  And never once have I been nominated for an Ovation Award, which is the biggest of the LA awards.  Well, that changed yesterday.  I happened to be on Facebook and saw a post congratulating everybody on the nominations.  I read a few of the names and it seemed like the usual people being nominated for the usual things, so I skipped down and read some of the post responses and saw my name.  I went back to the original post and there indeed was my name as well as Doug Haverty.  So, I went to the Ovation website and lo and behold and behold and lo, Doug was nominated for best book of an original musical and I was nominated for best score for an original musical.  What a pleasant surprise it was.  The ceremony is in January.

Yesterday, was a pretty pleasant day, partly due to the nomination news.  I got eight hours of sleep, answered a lot of e-mails, had a telephonic conversation, and then I went out and got a quick McDonald’s meal o’ the day, came home, and ate it all up.  I listened to music, did some work on the computer and at the piano, finally decided which two releases we’d announce at the end of the week, and wrote liner notes for the one that needed it, and got all that to Doug for designing.  One piece of music I found the other night but didn’t listen to until yesterday is really fascinating.  I love the Albinoni Adagio – used in many films, and I have several iterations of it, my favorite being the version used in Orson Welles’ The Trial, which we issued on CD (if you somehow missed that release, grab it, baby – it’s GREAT).  That was the first time I heard the piece and I just fell head over heels in love with it.  And then I heard it again just a month or two later, used in the brilliant Sundays and Cybele.  I can’t remember the first version I bought on LP, although I think if I saw it, I’d recognize it.  That was an excellent rendition.  But in all my years, I had no idea that The Doors had made a recording of it.  Now, I was a big fan of The Doors because their taste in music was just so interesting – Light My Fire was brilliantly done, and the surprising Alabama Song was too.  Well, it’s a crackerjack version of the Adagio, with guitars and you can find it on the Tube of You.

After all that, I showered, dressed, and then moseyed on over to the Group Rep, first stopping at the mail place to pick up a little package.  We had a production meeting at six, and then rehearsal at seven.

We picked up right where we’d left off and did the final two pages of act three.  I blocked it a few different ways until I found the way I liked, and it plays great now.  Then we went back to the top of act three and reviewed.  It took a while – blocking to remember or be refreshed on – and because I stopped a few times to add stuff.  Everyone’s obviously still finding their way, obviously, since it was only the fifth rehearsal.  But that is, for me, the biggest upside of the way I like to work – get the blocking done and out of the way as quickly as possible so that then the ONLY concentration is getting the characters right and the pacing right and the dynamics right.

We then went back and began act two, the review.  That was messy and slow – so we just slogged through about half of it and got everyone on the same page for the blocking (my assistant director has a really good bible) – I really was thinking we’d get through all of the act two review, but we did not.

I stopped at Gelson’s on the way home and got some salad and a bottle of Kraft Catalina dressing.  I forgot how much I used to like that dressing.  I came home and dressed the salad and ate it and it was a perfect evening snack.  Of course, then I proceeded to eat a few too many Halloween candies.  Such is the way of things.  Then it was time to write these here notes.

Today, I can sleep in a bit, then I have to get ready for a meeting at one in NoHo.  Then directly after the meeting, I have a two-fifteen lunch meeting, at which I’ll meet and lunch.  Then I can come home, prepare the announcement for the two new releases, and then it will be time to go to the theater for tonight’s rehearsal.  I’ll begin by slogging through the rest of act two.  Then we go back to the beginning and assemble the show, going straight through acts one, two, and three, without too many stops along the way, other than cleaning stuff up.  If we don’t finish, then we continue that process on Thursday.

Tomorrow, I have another lunch meeting, and then we do our rehearsal.  If we’ve somehow finished the assembling process, then I’ll spend the rehearsal running scenes several times in a row, doing detail work on staging and performances. Friday, I’m hoping can be a ME day, Saturday we’ll have our first run-through or stumble-through of the play, and then I’ll work on problem stuff.  And I think we’ll do the same on Sunday.  Then Monday we’re off and then it’s back to more rehearsals and run-throughs.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, sleep in a bit, have a meeting, have a lunch meeting, prepare a release announcement, and then rehearse and begin our assembling the play process.  Today’s topic of discussion: It’s Ask BK Day, the day in which you get to ask me or any dear reader any old question you like and we get to give any old answer we like.  So, let’s have loads of lovely questions and loads of lovely answers and loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have, at long last, been nominated for an Ovation Award.

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