Week 6 BLOG
And we’re off! The show is up and running. It is Tuesday morning and already approximately 6000 of you have seen our play.
The 3 day tech at the start of last week proved very valuable. It was a treat to watch the scenes I'm not in and to start to understand how to work in the Globe, playing thoughts out and up, not ignoring the corners and being bold in thought and action. The more I saw all the aspects of the production coming together the more I realised Sir Andrew's function in the play... He delights in 'revels' and I tried to find more moments where he can let the party animal in him out. Specifically, I have decided he loves dancing and, with the help of choreographer George [Lamb] I have tried to get as many dance moves as I can into the show. Andrew's not a good dancer but he believes he's the best and this is proving to be really fun to play every day.
We kicked off last Wednesday with an open dress rehearsal for friends, family and Globe staff. This was a valuable final part of our rehearsal process… the audience is such a big part of any performance at the Globe and to have friendly faces in to watch us at this stage was very encouraging. Then, on Thursday afternoon, we performed for the first time in front of our intended audience… 1500 young people. As the audience gathered the noise was extraordinary. I was reminded that spaces like the Globe were used for bear baiting 400 years ago. People would gather to cheer and whoop whilst a bear was torn to pieces by dogs. Listening to the noise from the tiring house (back stage) I started to feel a bit like the bear about to be ripped apart. Out we went into the yard for our 'pre-show' - a chance to welcome the audience to the Globe and sing with them before the show begins. Very quickly fear turned to excitement and I started to enjoy the ride.
I worked with a director once who described putting a play in front of an audience for a first time as 'dotting the eye of the dragon' in that the rehearsed play suddenly becomes a living breathing thing. There are so many surprises especially when it comes to moments that provoke laughter, outrage or shock. There were times when our brilliant band could scarcely be heard over the (appreciative) roaring of our crowd. I had forgotten just how special an audience at the Globe can be, particularly a Playing Shakespeare audience. Probably my favourite moment on stage is just after Toby Belch burps in Malvolio's face. The audience is brilliantly divided: some people laugh at Malvolio's expense whilst others take his side. Cries of outrage can be heard... "That IS RUDE!!" roars one audience member. We have to work very hard to keep the play on track and to pull the focus back after that sort of moment. We're now 4 performances into our run and I'm still learning more and more about how to include the audience in our story.
Fun times! Now it's a question of bedding in and keeping the energy up for our 3 week run. I'll let you know how it's going next week...
NEW BRIEF AVAILABLE – Design a Costume
A creative brief is given to each member of the creative team working on the project. It is intended to help them structure their ideas and keep a focus on the director's intended vision for the production.
Take a look at the some of the costumes in the play in the image gallery, or head over to the interviews page to hear the actors thoughts on their characters. Why not pick your favourite character and try making your own costumes for them and send it to us at: email@example.com.