Sunday, May 15, 2011

Good Times Great Shakes

Things are looking good for us as we prepare to rehearse our second show: A Midsummer Nights Dream. We've had so much fun with rehearsals for As You Like It, and we're excited to show everyone what we've got come May 30th. I feel that our hard work is really paying off, and to the blogging world out there, I'd like to give a fresh view of how we work and how we play.

In a conversation with Davey I realized that we're putting in a work load somewhere between a full time and a part time job. We've spent 4 hours every week night on rehearsal, anyone who's been available has been working on building the touring stage during the day, and of course we've all spent lots of time outside rehearsal anxiously memorizing. At the end of week two we were all pretty exhausted. Never fear however, we're taking the weekend to recover, and we'll be back at it.

But, just to catch you up, here are a few of the adventures we've had so far:

-A few of us celebrated "Cinco de Mayo" by going out to Del taco after rehearsal. It was then that Robbie challenged me to eat a dozen tacos, with the promise he'd pay for them if I managed to eat them. Naturally I accepted the challenge, and to the general astonishment of those present I proceeded to down a dozen tacos. The taste Del Taco cheese seems to linger in my mouth still.

-As we were leaving Del Taco, the employee's stopped me for a picture. I'm still not sure why, it might have to do with the sombrero I was wearing. So the group all huddled up for Cinco de Mayo picture with the Del Taco stuff. Cinco de Shakespeare!

-Dan, Aubrey and I listened to Ray's cowboy poetry at village inn

-We fell in and out of love with the new Theater behind the Orem City Library. We took our rehearsal there for shelter from the rain, and we've rehearsed there every day since. It's nice, but a little tricky on the acoustic end. We're excited to perform there this summer, but we're starting to miss the sunsets at Scera park and our Grassroots tree.

-Thursday's rehearsal was great. We had a lot of enthusiastic bystanders watch parts of the show. One I remember in particular was an old man, with an even older man in a wheel chair. Greg's sister-in-law commented, "That was the most entertained I've ever been watching Shakespeare." They really enjoyed our rehearsal and we enjoyed having an audience.

So grassroots fans, our shows are on their way. We're having lots of fun and we know you will too. We'll have our schedule out to you soon, so you can plan on seeing all three of our shows and bringing all your friends, family, extended relations, and co-workers!

See you soon.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Day 1: As You Like It

Yesterday was our first rehearsal for "As You Like It" and rehearsing once again in the park felt a bit like coming home.
When we first started this crazy experiment that has become the Grassroots Shakespeare Company we took to the free and open space of the public parks out of necessity--we had nowhere else to rehearse and nowhere else to perform, but now we embrace the advantages of public spaces by choice.
We arrived at the park to discover that there was some sort of volleyball tournament happening with two or three volleyball courts set-up all around our usual rehearsal spot.
No matter. We unpacked our set and with volleyball games happening on either side of us, we got down to business blocking our show.
The rehearsal went pretty smoothly, and although we're still in the mode of remembering and rediscovering our old process, we fell into a nice rhythm by the end of the night that we can only hope will continue.
We were also graced by Master Christopher Clark--without whom we would not exist and who has done much to support our company. Chris taught us a bawdy 3/4 jig that we're sure you'll find to be rollicking good fun. (provided we ever get the sequence down)
Between dodging stray volleyballs and the unfortunate dimness after sunset caused by loss of one of our worklights, we managed to make pretty good progess: Our script has been cut down to a lean 75 pages, and we almost met our goal of blocking through 25, but had to end at 22.
Perhaps by the end of May we'll have improved both our diction and our return serves!