saturday, in the park
Hello friends of the theatre!
Sorry to have not checked in with you all yesterday but it has been a busy week and yes, there is a lot of stuff to do to make a show happen. Like write it, for instance. We four writing Brothers (Dominique, Peg, Lisa and myself) spend a whole lotta time in our off-time tinkering with the script. I say tinkering, like it is a quaint hobby that is performed in a cozy corner of a basement with no deadline, but that is decidedly not the case. We are plowing through our writing notes to ourselves and have made good progress on tightening the script. I will hoist our petard about that. Hoist, hoist! Yet, there is still a big old scene to be tackled, a very long one where a lot of important stuff happens. We have written and re-written is so many times already, trying many different angels of attack but still we find ourselves unsatisfied. And we do not want the same fate for you, the viewing public when you see the show. So we return to the drawing board again and again and get it a little righter each time. Or so I hope.
Yesterday was a fun day of rehearsal and we continued working our way through the first part of the play and Leigh did the blocking. Well, she told it to us (blocking, for those of you lucky enough to not know, is what the movements of the actors are called "in the biz") and we did it and wrote it down in our scripts. Our ace stage management team also writes it down, which is good because sometimes I forget to write something down and then I can ask the ladies at the table to refresh my memory of a certain movement. We are a little more than a third of the way through the play, at this point.
I should also mention that since we are working on a new play,and we are also the playwrites, we are making change to the script constantly. That means that new pages must be generated and copied and distributed to everyone in the rehearsal room and to the designers, for instance if we make a big change like adding a scene or taking away a location. It can be very confusing. So a big shout out to the Ladies of the Table (Martha, Antonia and Kate) for being really good about all the paper flying around and so very helpful in executing the new pages shuffle. It is a small drag when a new page comes and all of the painstaking notes about blocking and props and cues are on the old one, and they are being very good about it all. Yay, Team Table!
We had a couple of special guest stars visit us yesterday, starting with our good friend and superhunk stage manager Chuck Means. He popped in at the top o' the day and I think the whiff of testosterone that trailed behind him really helped me to get my butch on for the afternoon. Then Miranda Hoffman, our costume designer came in and sat and watched for awhile, to get a feel for us beyond our cold measurements on the page. Those numbers represent a human being, and she knows it.
So that was Friday and today was Saturday and we did what's called a "straight 6", meaning we worked six straight hours without a meal break. This is not the preferred scheduling but we needed to be free in the early evening to go work the crowd at the dyke march. For those of you who are not familiar with this Pride season phenomenon, the dyke march is an offshoot march from the big hoo-ha tomorrow which, as the name implies, is for dykes to seize control of Fifth Avenue and walk downtown from the Public Library at 42nd Street to Washington Square Park. It is always spirited and fun and there is a lot of drumming and some toplessness and a whole lot of chatting with one's dykely friends. So today, we kept on blocking the show and then took off at 4:00 for the fountain in Bryant Park, where we reconvened and strolled down the ave, handing out postcards for the show and talking to those girls that you really only manage to see that once a year at this particular march. It was a fun as ever and we ended up in Washington Square, listening to our friends Gretchen Phillips, Kaye Turner and Caroline (whose last name I do not know) have a reunion gig of their band Girls in the Nose at their impromptu lesbian hootnanny.
We were also visited by speacial guest stars ML Geiger (our lighting designer) who sat pondering the lighting implications for a show set in the desert in August and once again, Miranda graced our rehearsal and talked to Babs about her full-body deep tan makeup possibilities.
Tomorrow is the 36th Annual Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Pride March, and we can be found on our flotilla that Alan has been hard at work on with his team of dedicated friends of NYTW. Stop by Fifth Ave if you are in the neighborhood and we should appear somewhere near the middle of the march. It does go on for hours so you might want to check out the web site of Heritage of Pride to try and figure out where we are in the lineup. I would estimate our time of arrival at say, 5th and 14th to be around like 3:00, but that is a wild guess.
Day off is Monday, so I will not post then. Meantime, have a good Pride everyone, wherever you may be spending it. If you are not queer yourself, take a little time to call a loved one who is and tell them you think they're great. And if you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans or have been for any moment of your life but are not able to celebrate with the rest of the rainbow nation, take some time on our international day of proudness to be grateful that you came out queer. It's a gift, so use it wisely friends.
Your Lesbian Brother,