I asked some shows if I could see a dress rehearsal. There’s no time to waste when Fringing. Director Corey Lynn Howe and her talented team bravely took me up on the offer.
Heather Lake bounded into rehearsal with all the energy I expect from her past performances. Hugs all around, quite literally! Travis Dixon, playing Hunter, expressed some confusion over Hot Pockets and how to eat them on-stage without getting Hot Pocket mouth. Then they jumped into a run-through.
I’d never seen the show, nor heard any of the music to my knowledge. Howe said I was in for a treat, and gave a knowing smile. She was absolutely right. The love and pain of creating a new play, blank pieces of paper mocking you, wondering how people will accept and love your work as much as you do – all presented with the premise that the characters create the show as we see it.
It may be the rehearsal, it may be the script, but something about the middle third sort of lagged. It certainly wasn’t the performances or desire to be there. If you need a little kick in the arse to go tell stories you love, you will just adore [title of show]. At any moment you expect the characters to reach out of the purposely flimsy fourth wall and pull you onstage, a’la Neverending Story.
That was just seeing it in the church rehearsal room. Imagine inside a theatre with some design and more audience.
Here’s Howe on finding the play and why she wanted to produce and direct it: “The more I read and the more I heard, the deeper I fell into imagining my own version of it – I was hooked….The more I thought about it, the deeper I got into the process, the deeper I fell in love with the characters and the story, the clearer it became that this show found me as much as I found it. I just had to do it.”
You can tell.
- See more at: http://losangeles.bitter-lemons.com/2013/06/09/lets-fringe-last-of-the-sneak-peeks/#sthash.PrErzz1c.dpuf