Thursday, October 02, 2008

the experiment continues

Today was our fourth day of rehearsal - one read through, one walk through of each act, and today we started blocking. I've been using feeders for every rehearsal (except the read through), and I see great progress. I can actually watch each team (referred to together as their character name) gel, gathering speed and confidence and anticipating the needs of each other. The seconds feed in, and today were writing down blocking for their partners (whom I refer to as partners rather than actors - together the second and partner make up one "actor"). Having two people for each character also allows us to continue with rehearsal even if someone has to talk to their mom or use the restroom.

I asked my kids today what they think. Overwhelmingly, they love it. My seconds love being part of the team, one of my actresses said, "I already know some of my lines," and one of my actors said, "Me too, I just say them in the wrong place sometimes." I figure, heck, for them to know any lines at all at the end of the first four-day rehearsal week is pretty amazing.

My department chair saw my rehearsal schedule and said, "I think it's ambitious; be prepared to not start blocking as soon as you think you can." I was able to answer only that she should stop into rehearsal one day.

Now I need to figure out how to use seconds for a musical...

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

It's A Big Day For Book Nerds!

As a part of Banned Books Week, NPR ran this great story on The Grapes of Wrath. It's the sort of story that makes me proud to teach English and prouder to be the great niece of migrant Okies who did, in fact, settle in Northern CA.

I also spent most of the morning laboring under the impression that today is the 80th birthday of our beloved Oxford English Dictionary. Well, it's not. I guess the story I heard on NPR was a rerun?

Have a Merry Unbirthday, OED! I'm off to get more coffee and perhaps hear clearly.