August 12 2015
We have been in Cambridge rehearsing and preparing for four/five days so far. With nine actors and ten production team it’s quite a lot to keep track of but we’re getting into the swing of things. Most days start early (for me) with a 9:30 briefing on stage at the ADC Theatre which we’ve been given the run of. The stage is the main rehearsal area, with the Larkum turning into an impromptu music room, the bar has becoming our dining room, the production office contains cardboard models, dressing room 2 is strewn with wires and other random equipment pulled out of the CAST/ETG cupboard, and the clubroom has become the main area for tea breaks, lunches, and communal admin. Rehearsals run all day with the actors joining Kennedy for one-on-one character workshops, ‘modern language’ run throughs, as well as fight choreography with Robbie (our very own Hortensio). Meanwhile Livvy, our Education Officer has been getting stuck into researching the play and planning workshops and the rest of the production team have been getting on with various admin jobs and, our most time-consuming activity of the moment, planning and building the set.
So far for the prod team every day has been quite different. Mostly we have been discussing how to fit a set into the baggage restrictions set by Virgin Atlantic. Our current plan (although we’ve had at least four different ones over the past couple of days) is to build at least one of our own suitcases, which involved me ringing up Virgin and sounding like a crazy lady (although apparently people building their own suitcases is more common than you might expect). Then the rest of the set is to be made of cubes which can be rotated and rearranged to create different backdrops. Yesterday me, Emma our designer, Josie our technical director, and Jossie our stage manager had a productive day, firstly buying more onions that you can imagine as part of our trip to the wholesalers. Feeding nineteen people has already begun to make us think very differently about food. Then we had a trip to Dunelm Mill to buy our set (seriously) which involved weighing ottomans in the shop before filling Jossie’s car with them. After a lunch break and building a model suitcase out of cardboard we cycled out to West Cambridge to pick blackberries and plums for a crumble, getting very scratched in the process and discovering Josie’s talent at standing on bikes. After a communal dinner of sausage and mash a significant number of the company went to the Picturehouse to see a film.
There still seems like a lot to do- training, building the suitcase, ordering fabric and sewing, not to mention the tour management admin that still needs doing but on the whole things seem to be going well and are getting done.
Laura Sedgwick/Tour Manager/Wednesday 12 August 2015