Sunday, November 06, 2011

TREE OF KNOWLEDGE GOES INTO REHEARSALS

It's a solemn kind of occasion, going into rehearsal.

I never quite know what's going to happen. I want my contributions to be supportive and helpful, if they can be. Because life is so short and there's quite enough suffering in it without adding more.

It makes me blush to think how terrible I was when I first began. I didn't know what to do. But then no-one had told me. There was really no information about it at all. So I sat in the rehearsal room - which actually was the stage of the old Traverse, on the set of Chris Hannan's "Elizabeth Gordon Quinn" - sat there not knowing what to do and feeling miserable.

I hated the sound of my play, and consequently spent a lot of time with my head in my hands. Which the actors took to mean that I hated what they were doing.

Which I didn't.

And then if they ever asked me what such a such a line was for, I'd say "I don't know".

Because I didn't.

None of this was very helpful. Afterwards I learnt to glue a smile onto my face, even if it was false, and even when I didn't know what a line was doing somewhere, I'd always make something up.

Because that made everyone feel better. Including me.

But generally there's no need to fake a smile these days. I love working with actors; and I learn so much.

And directors, too, I add hastily, and designers and stage managers and musicians and lighting designers and everyone involved.

My words are about to transform. Can't wait to see what happens.

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