We got rhythm.
Saturday’s rehearsal – in the studio again – was about rhythm and nuance. Mostly, it was about rhythm.
Director Ed Rosing, who was reading for Cora (who got stuck having to do a training session at her new job that day), was also an orchestra conductor of sorts – suggesting a quickening of the pace during certain sections, then returning us to more thoughtful, even languid, rhythms elsewhere. Playwright Jamie Johnson was there too, slipping us a script insert page to help smooth out the flow of a section of dialogue that had been bugging him. And sound designer Rick Jones was in attendance as well, at the sound board setting up the music that will be played behind the fairy tale sections of the play.
The music is lovely, and Ed remarked that Ruth’s rhythm – while she was reading the fairy tale near the beginning of the play – organically fell into step with the Chopin Nocturne. A more modern classical piece — I can’t recall the title – will play behind the fairy tale storytelling at the end. It really is remarkable how the music can affect you in the context of reading a play. It certainly ups the emotional ante. While the text will predominate, the music will play subtly in the background – a “mist” behind the dialogue.
And, at the end of rehearsal, Pat McCarthy (one of the two co-artistic directors for NIF) dropped by to see how we were doing and pass along info about reservations for the festival. With the cast and creative team of each play working in isolation, we pretty much just pass each other coming in and out of the rehearsal spaces, so it’s nice to connect with one of the festival’s organizers, as well as have the opportunity to say “hey” to the other actors, directors, playwrights and SMs that we cross paths with.
One more rehearsal for Falling coming up this weekend and then the public reading a week after that. In the meantime, Jamie loaned me an earlier, longer version of the script – this includes lots of back story on Constance, and other moments from her life, that I’d like to take a look at. What does “love” mean? How does that definition differ in each relationship? And how do you find good love after so much bad? So many facets to this character – and we see her at four different ages – a strong, complicated and damaged woman. She’s not a particularly nice person – or an easy person – but I like Constance a lot.
For those of you trying to book NIF tickets by calling the box office, you’ll be hearing the old message for A Woman of No Importance; I’m assured that this will be updated today.
Otherwise, you can now book tickets online via the link on Alumnae Theatre’s New Ideas Festival page
I should also mention that the Saturday readings (of which Falling is one of three) are pay-what-you-can (cash only) and there are no reservations; arriving at the theatre early is strongly recommended to avoid disappointment. The box office opens at 11 a.m. on the Saturdays of the New Ideas Festival and the readings start promptly at noon. There will be a talkback with the playwright, director and cast following each reading.
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The staged reading in Week One of New Ideas Festival. Don’t miss it: Saturday March 9 at noon sharp.