Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Twelfth Night, and we're opening Saturday!

The live blog was on hiatus while we were feverishly working on set, lines, costumes, technical aspects, and everything else associated with the play.  But now, we're starting to do full runs of the performance, which means that all of the ancillary work is winding down.  And now, we can just have fun hanging out in the Green Room with a lot of hilarious people.

So we've already started with the hilarity:

6:10:  Rick is pontificating about the need to bring in some urine absorption for the gents bathroom, which led to a whole interesting discussion of bathroom habits of men and women, which led to:

6:11:  Jerry:  "I'm eating over here."  Wendy:  "So, Hepatitis-C...."

6:18:  Jayce, looking in the green room fridge:  "Wow, there's actually nothing growing fuzz in here for once.  And we've also gotten rid of the props from last year...."

6:19:  Joel:  "I thought they were dog treats.  They looked like rawhide donuts."

6:20:  Jayce:  "I can remember a 45 minute segment while in 3rd grade that has absolutely no relevance to anything."

6:29:  Don Quixote's brother, Juan Quixote.

6:36:  J. P.: "I should probably get dressed."

6:44:  Wendy:  "You should take some of that industrial grade deodorant and rub it on your legs."

7:52:  Well, I left for a while to go warm up for this run, and apparently nobody wanted to live blog.  Anyway, we have a run starting in 8 minutes; so perhaps more soon while I'm not out on the stage....

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Birthday to us!

It's the birthday of the Distracted Globe; we are 8 years old today!  We will be live blogging today because it's a working birthday; we will be throwing down on Twelfth Night again today, hoping to run all the scenes in the show at some point of the day.  So to bring us up to speed:  the set is making tremendous progress in the building and painting aspects, costumes are picking up steam, and Jerry is abusing the actors just enough to keep them off-balance....

1:30:  Rick is asking Siri some questions she doesn't want to answer, apparently.

1:50:  The actors are starting to trickle in.  Coffee is well represented so far; at least half of the actors have some sort of cup in their hand.

2:00: Vocal warmups by Matt Reece.  Unfortunately, we none of us kept our vocal warmup sheets from Merchant, so we're trying to go from memory...

2:25:  Orsino and his hyper-active hopeless romanticism....

2:44:  Entrance again to watch J.P. limp across the stage.  When there is a shipwreck, people end up limping.

3:01:  1.3 would be still more awesome with Rick doing a solo act.

3:03-3:20:  Orsino scene.  I'm not going to get into the details, but, well, yeah...

3:55:  Rick is a lesbian trapped in a man's body.

4:03:  Sebastian is Freudian slipping.

5:00:  Breaking for a couple hours in the middle to give the actors a little chance to unwind a bit. 

7:00:  And, we're back.

7:03:  Jerry is most assuredly NOT admonishing.

7:05:  Jerry: "Next weekend is tech."  Jayce:  "Stop SAYING that!"

7:07:  The storyland of Illyria.

7:10:  Rick:  "No, faith, I'll not stay a jot longer!"  Jayce:  "For God's sake, let me get to the page!"

7:14:  "Upstage.  It's a technical term, I should have used something easier."

7:21:  We need a sound effect for demagnetizing.

7:33:  And we have slobbering on hands.  Well, it's all one.

7:34:  Jerry:  "Anne, I wonder if there's any room for more bad acting here."  Anne:  "Oh, yes, absolutely!" 

7:39:  Anne:  "No, this is great.  This is better than the real housewives."

8:15:  "Let's repeat with less horribleness."

8:22:  And now we are dealing with premature enunciation.  One of the problems of age...

8:25:  It looks sort of like a bad episode of "Cops" over here.

8:59:  Fabian can butt act, but not Orsino.  Where is the justice?!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Twelfth Night Rehearsal - the fifth of July

Tonight's a working rehearsal for the Viola / Orsino scenes. After last night's mid-week yet weekend-esque celebration of our nation's independence, we are all a little subdued, but nevertheless ready to work...

We have made significant progress on the set over the last two days. Jayce worked straight through  the 4th of July party, while an ever-shifting group of company members and party guests came in to watch him paint and build - a few of us even picked up a paint brush ourselves. Next year we might sell tickets. Though we're not sure if it qualifies as performance art, or if we need to get licensed as a zoo. And today, we had some wonderful volunteers and of course the fabulous and sun-proof Maranda working on the floor treatment, construction of set elements, and assisting the amazing and hummingbird-metabolized Liz on costumes.  In unrelated news, Jerry is fighting a bit of crankiness. He had his car washed this afternoon, which prompted a rainstorm. His afternoon snack fell prey to the Carolina heat...

But we'll do our best to help him overcome these obstacles by working extra hard tonight.

Besides, he still has that riding crop.

There's a tempest brewing outside. Wind and rain and thunder. But inside? You be the judge.

7:17 - It's kind of like a Groundhog Day situation for Orsino. Everyday could be the day he finally gets her.

7:19 - Orsino's a junkie. His addiction? Melancholy.

7:20 -  Jerry -  "Servant. Footman. Minion. I guess that leaves you as piss boy."

7:23 -  Jerry: "this is why Orsino's army lost to Antonio."  Andy: "We didn't have the right soundtrack."

7:24 - Jerry to Curio: "not so OPENLY hostile. He IS the Duke. We still have to pretend."

7:26 - that awkward moment when you realize that Orsino is not a feminist.

7:38 - it is revealed that Orsino is not the only one who is experiencing Groundhog Day type moments, as Curio and Valentine and Feste make their entrance for the 7th time - only to hear "let's take that again." almost immediately. Jerry: "Isn't theatre glamorous?"

7: 44 -  Jerry: "Minutiae. But it's important minutiae!" 

7:50 - Jerry - "That was wonderful work! Take it one more time. Let's make sure it wasn't a fluke."

7:51 - Phyllis /  Feste begins to sing like an angel. And the heavens accompany her with thunder....

7:58 - Curio and Valentine ARE Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.

8: 06 - Jerry schools Andy on how to pronounce "Anti-thesis", Southern-style....

8:10 - Andy earns one punched pronoun. Atta boy!

8:15 - Viola puts out the big "what if."

8:17 - Heidi brings tears to our eyes...

8:20 -  Andy: "Can I try that again with some diction?"

8:22 -  Regarding Orsino's change in interest - "Give her this...jewel" -  Jerry's translation - "I don't really give a   $#*^ anymore! Give her this...roll of toilet paper. Give her my checkbook. Whatever."

8:31 - Jerry: "Okay, next up is Valentine's sabotage scene."

8:31 - Michele: "I love having influence without a big line load."

8:36 - Jerry: "I'm telling a fabulous story. You should all listen."

8:40 - Jerry: "You're getting lost in your servants, and we don't want that."

8:46 - Jerry: "alright let's try this ONE MORE time. And then I may cut all of it."

8:47 - Jerry - "One more time. I lied. I'm a terrible liar. Dance, monkeys! Dance!"

8:53 - Jerry: " you should have your moment together. It's always better when you suffer together rather than

8:55 - Jerry is now working the downstage perimeter, riding crop in hand.

8:59 - Curio and Valentine are no longer alone in the litterbox. Orsino just climbed in.

9:02 -  Jerry: "It's really Cheez-Whiz, but I actually like it." 

9:19 - sometimes a riding crop is just a riding crop. Until it becomes a wand. Expecto patronum! 

9:23 - Andy pulls Jerry's ass out of the fire. We're all good friends here.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Twelfth Night, rehearsal 7.

Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the beautiful and fantastic Warehouse Theatre in Greenville, SC!  It's a beautiful night for a rehearsal, there's not a cloud in the ceiling.  And I think everyone is looking forward to Director Jerrold Scott's attempt to win yet another rehearsal from the Twelfth Night cast.  Last night, Jerry went to the riding crop to emphasize his points; thankfully, he was actually the only one to be injured by said riding crop last night, so the actors were lucky to have escaped the range of his weaponry.  So tonight, there won't be fireworks--those are two days away--but I am absolutely certain that there will be excitement and joy a-plenty.  So we're about to begin:  let's see what happens tonight.

7:12:  "I think it's just fists."

7:13:  Jerry:  "I like your secret stick.  Cane."

7:15:  Rick:  "I have no lines, I was holding the book as protection."

7:19:  Anne just gave Jerry the riding crop again.  Ohh, boy.  Twenty minutes in, and he's already got to go to the whip...

7:24:  Jerry has now gone to a German accent and is threatening to kill us all.

7:27:  And we have Jayce's favorite line of this show in 4.1.  And he also just did a plie.

7:34:  We're just going to strap Malvolio to the top of the car.

7:36:  Matt:  "I feel like I'm in Disneyworld."  Rick:  "There's a little man in the boat."  And Matt is having fun trying to be off-book while in the box.  Check Manfriend's or Samantha Else's facebook page for the photo.

7:42:  Jayce:  "His majesty looks like the piss boy."  Anne:  "Don't break Matt."

7:44:  "I think I will see if Kevin can keep him as dark as possible until he is activated."

8:08:  "Once you are off-book, I think you should contact one another."

8:09: "The street scene about a giant's ass."

8:21: "I think this gives you woka-woka room."

8:26: "Orsino doesn't need back-up singers."

8:27: Jerry: "Are you cuffed? Behind or in front?" Stephen: *quizzical look* Jayce: "Do you cuff behind or in front?" Jerry: "Do you have a cuffing preference?"

8:30: Jerry "Hey Joel, I want to make a line change -- can you give up your candy?" Joel: "Again?!" ...Jerry: "Orsino did not get his M&Ms and now he's pissed."

8:35: "It is like spider-sense, but not..."

8:36: "Do that again with less suck-titude."

8:37: Andy and Miranda attempt to Indian leg wrestle....

8:49: "Directing is geometry. Thank God because it was the only math I could pass."

9:07: "What do steampunk injuries look like?! ... I don't know ... Bleeding gears.... Oil...?!?!"

9:13: "I hate a drunken rogue" -W.S. (or was it Jayce? Oh goodness, where is a script when I need one?)

9:18: "You're a fickle bitch Sebastian."

9:29: Jerry: "Turn out Andy... No butt acting in my plays" Andy: "It is my best side" Jerry: "...I have nothing constructive to say..."

9:35: Speed through commences.
9:38: Phyllis and Andy compete for speediest coherent Shakespearean.
9:40: Cesario: "I'M LOST!"
9:42: Jerry: "NO BUTT ACTING! Learn!" [demonstrates] ...riding crop becomes metronome.
9:45: End.

Shakespearean O's are not punishment, they are propellers. Use them. (Jerry makes my heart happy)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Twelfth Night publicity photo.

 Feste, Olivia, Malvolio, Sir Toby

Photograph by Stephen Boatright Photography.

Twelfth Night, day 6.

And welcome.  We have built some platforms and some pedestals and brought in some furniture, so the space is starting to be roughed in.  The tabula rasa is filling with kitsch, one of the hallmarks of DG shows.  So, without any delay, let's jump right in:

2:02:  "Part of the closing ritual every night needs to be making sure Joel isn't still downstairs."

So I've seen the publicity shots, and they are fantastic.  I mean, like ankle-breakingly good.  Like, "Oh, so THAT'S what you mean by Steampunk?  My patella just dislocated in glee.  My nipples explode with delight."  That sort of thing.

2:24:  "He's kvetching, you're trying to placate him, that sort of thing."  Any Yiddish words automatically get mentioned.

2:27:  We might have to have somebody actually learn to play the viol d'gamboys. Apparently it's like a cello.

3:03:  And Spain is up 1-0 on Italy at Euro2012.  Yes, that is actually a sporting reference in a theatre. 

3:13:  The director is carrying a riding crop.  The actors are looking a little more nervous, especially Malvolio. 

3:15:  "Aren't I clever?  Aren't I sparkly and fabulous?"

3:31:  And Spain, 2-0.  It's a tall order for Italy to come back from that.

3:42:  "It's a little stalker-y."

4:01:  Antonio still has lines and Sebastian is long gone.  Might be a good time for a direct aside.  Manfriend: "And, follow him?"  Jerry:  "Yes, skipping, please."

4:09:  Joel is all about nerd-pride.  And Michele gives him credit for being a Renaissance man.

4:09:  Rick: "Go ahead, touch it."  Anne:  "Ooh, look at the action on that thing!"  Rick:  "You should feel the vibration on it.  I call it, 'Bob.'"

4:28:  3-0 to Spain.  It's pretty much over.

4:33:  "If you're going to do this, it's got to look like a compromising position."

4:33-4:37:  Words can't do this justice.  It would be futile.

4:46:  And Spain wins, 4-0.  

8:47:  Sorry to be away from it so long.  I know a lot of funny stuff has happened while I've been floating around, having dinner, being in scenes, and in trying on costumes.  Maybe I will have the blog up and available for everyone to add things as needed.

8:49:  Evan wants to be on the blog tonight. 

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Twelfth Night Saturday read-through.

Welcome to the Saturday read-through of Twelfth Night!  We are now meeting the director, Jerrold Scott, and the requisite introductions and background.

So his perspective?  This is kind of a problem play: the major sub-plot is far more interesting to Shakespeare than the plot, Viola is fairly passive as a protagonist, the comedy works itself toward uncomfortable, the play can be a little unsettling.  So it's an Elizabethan version of "Friends."

Major theme:  Escapism.  Steampunk as a metaphorical representation of escapism.  Illyria is Steampunk nirvana; yet the characters are trying to forget the awfulness in their lives.  And escapism is intoxicating; but what happens when escapism gets too serious?

4:25:  "I don't want Twelfth Night to be emo."

4:31:  "We don't want to be clever with concept choices.  The point is the primacy of the text."

4:33:  "Americans are starved for beautiful excess in language.  Language is paramount, language is sacrosanct."

4:41:  Show-And-Tell!  Set design, costume design.

5:02:  "Find the universal in the specific."

5:04:  "We can discover what it wants to be."

Rather than a machete and chainsaw, it's cut with tweezers and pinking shears.

6:18:  Jokes will be noted with a "wocka-wocka!"

6:30:  "I am in love with Antoniolivia!"

Final table reading...please stand by...

Yeah.  This show is going to be hilarious.  Malvolio is taking direct asides to the Stage Manager.  I think Jaime is quite enjoying the attention. Though she is also turning six shades of red....

8:48:  And the sequel is Thirteenth Night, where Malvolio returns and kills everyone.

9:07:  "You're in a great place.  Well, don't want to shoot myself in the foot.  I am VERY concerned..."

9:09:  "You need to jump.  Otherwise, I'll push..."

And we are breaking to start building and whatnot.  Have a lovely evening, all!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Tape-delayed blogging for tonight.

7:08:  We are at the Casa de Tromsness for tonight’s session, so we’re going to be non-technology and post all of this after the fact.  So welcome, everyone, and you’ll have all the delightful goodness all at once. 

7:18:  Discussion of the free-market economy.  “Oh, you sell computers?  But WE sell computers, and we’ve done it for a long time.  It would make us sad if you would sell computers.”

7:23:  1.1.  Nothing like starting off the play with one of the more famous speeches in Shakespeare.  Talk about scary.  The challenge of keeping Orsino active rather than languishing in melancholy for the whole play.

7:48:  1.2:  From the Utah Shakespeare festival:  Viola dresses as Sebastian so she doesn’t lose him.  When you never leave the grieving process, the one who is gone can remain indefinitely.

8:10:  The Tromsness dogs will be renamed “Fadge” and “Barful” for the run of this show. 

8:38:  Another famous scene—the Olivia and Viola in 1.5.  Making some good discoveries through this scene, and seeing this one change and develop. 

8:40:  Welcome to the Orsino Internship Program.  This year’s intern:  Cesario. 

8:43:  We fall in love with people who call us out on our crap.

8:58:  Backstage of the Muppet theatre is the most comforting place in the world.  And Jaime likes Scooter because he was the only rational one.

9:06:  The dreaded “Camillo” club:  all the functional characters that get no love.   Horatio, Camillo, Antonio, etc. 

9:08:  It’s like the Dread Pirate Roberts and Wesley!

9:25:  Parallelism throughout.

9:34:  It’s amazing to see the recurrence of ideas in this play.  Music, wet/dry, drink, madness, identity, twins, will, it’s all one.

9:49:  Anne enters, back from the Applied Theatre Conference.  Jayce called it:  when she saw the spread of food on the table, the response was, “Oh, my goodness.”  And Jayce insists that none of it is for potential future midnight snackage.

9:50:  Yay, verse!

9:55:  Antonio, the Pirate Queen.

9:59:  Sebastian gives really good backrubs.

10:06:  Shakespeare understood madness; repetition of the same thing day after day and expecting a different result.

10:23:  Well, that wraps us for tonight.  Relationships clarified, text figured out, and more progress toward a fantastic show.  Good night, everybody!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wednesday, June 27th.

Sorry we are a little late in starting this evening, ladies and gentlemen.  We are in the middle of a photo call featuring several members of the Twelfth Night ensemble; Olivia, Malvolio, Sir Toby, and Feste.  Perhaps we will have an exclusive sneak-peek of the look of Twelfth Night on the blog?

7:21:  Serenaded by Tom Waits singing every song ever written.  Currently, the Tom Waits' cover of "Purple Rain."  It's a duet between Rick and Evan currently, but more might join in with the smoky death-warmed-over aesthetic...

7:23:  Jaime just went for the booty, with the claim that, "It is addicting."

7:26:  Evan thinks he might look semi-attractive in this show.  It's a dream, Evan.  It's only a dream....

7:27:  Don't write things about people when they're sitting right next to you.  Ouch.

7:28:  "Everyone has fondled that booty.  It's close to sloppy tenths by now."

7:29:  Pirate's Booty, the delicious puffed snack.  C'mon, everyone.  Get your minds out of the gutter.

7:33:  Malvolio's costume is reminiscent of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' "Don't Come Around Here No More."  Youtube that song; it's well worth your time.

7:42:  Thanks to Valentine Wolfe, we will have Feste Karaoke.

7:44:  Amelia Earhardt, The Musical.  (Ask Rick and Evan.)

7:45:  1.3 is the starting point.  Toby and the Beagle.  Which, incidentally, would be another good name for a band.

7:55:  Olivia needs a lot of toast.

8:01:  All the definitions and permutations of "accost."

8:01:  Anne:  "Permission to punch the pronoun, sir?"  Jayce:  "Granted!"

8:02:  Rick needs to be an octopus to hit all potential locations of the buttery-bar.

8:05:  Blame it on beef when it's actually syphillis.  Rick:  "Syphillis:  the other white meat."

8:08:  Someone is going to milk someone else.  And we're not going to say who it might be.

8:10:  It's traditional to see Aguecheek wearing a blonde pageboy.

8:16:  Dance to condiment to prostitute to the back-trick.  And Sir Toby's response to that:  "Wherefore are these things hid?"

8:22:  And on to 1.5.

8:43:  A discussion of inductive and deductive reasoning.  Sherlock Holmes used inductive reasoning far more often than deductive reasoning.

8:47:  "I wear not motley in my brain."

8:52:  Caught Malvolio with his mouth full of chocolate.

8:57:  Break time.

9:01:  Jayce:  "Sir Toby and Sir Andrew are both complete dork-nuggets."

9:07:  Jelly Belly face!  Very similar to a pistachio face, but sweeter.

9:16:  "None of us are perceptive enough to notice this kid in drag."

9:23:  The Cambridge gives you the sense of, "Well, if you HAVE to look this up.... Our children know this from the womb."

9:26:  Rhydwyn!

9:35:  "He was going to kill me, and then I left."

10:09:  It's not that we're not updating.  We're just knocking out scenes quickly. 

10:26:  Everyone say it with me now:  "Gorboduc."

10:27:  Sir Topas might be a Southern preacher.

10:30:  We found the moment where Sir Toby is sober!

 10:32:  "I will help you toot."

And we are about to close it down for the evening.  We have to clean up the space and put things in order for the Applied Theatre Conference tomorrow.  So good night, everyone, and back at it tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Twelfth Night, Tuesday, June 26th.

And after a fantastic rehearsal last night, where we met everyone and read 1.1 to 2.2, we are back for another terrific evening of Shakespeare with a motley collection of slightly strange people!  We are starting a little later tonight; but now that the coffee is brewed, the snacks have been safely stowed, and the cast is filtering into the functionally lovely Warehouse Theatre space, the live blog will begin on the first funny thing that Wendy says.  And that is:

6:57:  Wendy:  "I ate at the taco hut down the street.  Bad idea.  I am already starting to feel it."

6:58:  Editorial note:  I don't censor.  I just record....

6:59:  Breann brings a bowl of water in a ceremonial manner.  It is time for the ritual face-washing.  It's a little more difficult since the water is in plastic bottles, but we soldier on....

7:02:  The poof, the first piece of the Twelfth Night set, is here in the space!  And we are now met....

7:04:  Andy:  "I drink coffee for the taste..."

7:04:  Rick:  "I don't need booty."

7:05:  Jayce:  "Steampunk is exploded Victorian."  Discussion of the merger of style aesthetic and technology.

7:11:  Jayce is trying to reconcile being Irish and an Anglophile.

7:16:  Jayce:  "Malvolio loses his mind and comes out looking like 'Panic at the Disco.'"

7:22:  And Jayce is filling us in on all the things that we missed last night.  Things like public/private address, the difference between soliloquies and monologues, pitch bridging, stationing (driving toward the punctuation as if it were a destination), rhetorical engines, and the like.  Still more of the incredibleness that is Shakespeare.  Don't you wish you were here?

7:47:  Rick loves "strumpet."

7:52:  E. M. W. Tilliard, "The Elizabethan World Picture."  A tedious, artery-hardening work that is still fantastic.  Sister Miriam Joseph wrote "Shakespeare's Use of the Arts of Language," and she peeled the labels off of her beer.

7:56:  Manfriend:  "My very name is a dick joke."  Speaking of Shakespeare, I think, but I also think "manfriend" works just as well....

7:59:  Crystal:  "Lots of people are joking about the Myrmidons in the ghetto these days..."

8:05:  Feste's first song is in the key of "O."

8:06:  The first appearance of Haddaway's, "What is love?"  Feste's song, 2.3.46 in the Arden.  Look it up if you don't believe me.

8:07:  Jayce:  "Orsino would fall in love with a piece of timber if it would let him."

8:21:  Why this word now?

8:33:  It's been three months, and we're already forgetting the characters of Merchant.  "Nerissa and...douchebag, and Portia and...that other guy."

8:47:  Fabian is the Michael Vick of Illyria.

8:49:  "Look how imagination blows him."  No, that's really in the script.

8:58:  Finger puppets can help to explain things.

9:16:  "You should have banged the youth into dumbness."  Also in the script.  (3.2.21 in the Arden)

9:30:  Oh, Shakespeare, you are so meta....

9:36:  Rick (as Aguecheek) is posing during the description of his "valour," vaguely reminscent of some of the choreography from Cabaret.

9:48:  "You are well fleshed."  Again, script.

9:56:  Malvolio sounds a bit like Hepburn.

9:56:  And, Anne just snorted with laughter.  Well, all is one.

10:00:  Crystal:  "Umm, I have a question.  Am I supposed to be a priest?  And a priest of what?  And, am I a dude?"

10:20:  We're starting a band:  Sir Toby and the Lighter People.  Album #1:  "The Whirligig of Time."

10:23:  "Do you want to plug your wiki?"

10:29:  And we are done for the evening.  Another fantastic and fun rehearsal; back at it tomorrow.  And tomorrow, I am not called, so I will be free to live blog with reckless abandon and not have to worry about reading any of the words.  Good night!

Monday, June 25, 2012

It might be Twelfth Night, but it's the first night of table work.

Well, this is a tremendously exciting evning.  We are starting with the first session of table work for the Distracted Globe's summer season, featuring a fantastic cast of very awesome people.  And I hope that through the summer, the 3.5 people who read this blog will become very familiar with their awesomeness.

Tonight, and for the subsequent three nights, the talented Jayce Tromsness will be leading us through text work and table work on this play.  And this will be fun.  I will be your host on the live blog tonight; and since the Rick Connor, the Michele Labar, the Manfriend Boathouse, and several other DG stalwarts are sitting within earshot, the hilarious and sometimes surreal comments will be posted thick and fast (or thickly and fastly).  So, with 15 minutes to start of rehearsal and almost half of the cast assembled, let's begin!

6:52:  Jayce:  "I feel like we're part of a really big, cool, corporation."

6:53:  Rick:  "There are only, like, two actors here."  Andy:  "Yeah.  And both of them are Rick."

6:58:  Manfriend:  "Shut your whore mouth."

6:59:  Evan:  "You've got to choose your kiss-uppers better.  Or kiss-uppees."

7:00:  We discuss the feasibility of Friendster and a MySpace account.

7:00:  Rick was recognized as "the walrus dude."  And chants of "Oosik" start around the table....

7:02:  Jayce opens with a ship metaphor.  I'm not sure how that's going to fit into Twelfth Night....

7:05:  Evan:  "Antonio and the Captain.  My other favorite 50's singing duo.  Remember their songs?  I Love You More than The Barnacles Love the Bottom of the Boat.  And I Love My Dinghy."

7:07:  Stephanie looks at Rick and says, "Buxom."  To be fair, she was reading the Shakespeare lexicon.  Now, she's got the word "brimfulness."

7:10:  Rick:  "I thought we got the good Matt."

7:12:  The mushroom cloud of M&Ms has just been sighted....

7:15:  County square is "a bit of a hoof."  Jayce has always had a way with words.  I think it's the Pacific Northwest in him.

7:20:  Introduction of the 10-minute playwrights:  Reed, Jason, and Stephanie.

7:23:  The history of the Distracted Globe.  Eight years ago, several people were bored in the summer...  We started with improv, but were designed to become a teaching company and started to use scripted shows, classics primarily, based on the skills and talents of the core members.

7:28:  Jayce:  "Why Shakespeare?  It's because we are the odd collectors of relics that nobody else wants.  But I hope that's not really the case.  We are trying to take something that is a little more difficult and make it clear.  We will not dumb down the experience."

7:30:  Rick:  "WWSD?"  In response to Jayce's affirmation that Shakespeare would write in contemporary vernacular.

7:33:  Anne:  "The smaller parts get the bigger costumes."

7:37:  Jayce just said, "Naughty bits."

7:37:  The tools of Shakespeare:  Schmidt's Lexicons, David and Ben Crystal's lexicon (www.shakespeareswords.com), Cambridge pronounciation, "All the Words on Stage", Edith Skinner's "Speak With Distinction", Shakespeare in Production, Madd Harold's "An Actor's Guide to Performing Shakespeare", "Instant Shakespeare" by Louis Fantastia, Barry Edelstein's "Thinking Shakespeare", and a whole bunch more.

7:43:  Antithesis, juxtaposition, character, conflict.  Language needs to be muscular and visceral.  Nothing in Shakespeare's world can be defined by one adjective.  And Hemingway would have shot Shakespeare on a hunting trip for being too verbose.

7:47:  Image clusters are not coincidence.  Sounds are not coincidence.

7:49:  And Paul just came down off the ladder.

7:49:  Writers get angry when actors don't pay attention to the punctuation.  And Stephanie agrees with a long, low "Amen."

7:51:  Shakespeare is about finding our way to Rick.

7:52:  "Is this about action, or is this about thought?"  Latin versus Saxon.

7:53:  Build into threes.  Fight the temptation to trail off; Americans start at 100 mph and finish at 0.  Need to drive to the end of lines. 

7:55:  Paraphrases.  Close paraphrase:  almost word-by-word.  General paraphrase:  about half the language.  Essential paraphrase:  One word/one sentence.

7:57:  Magic Mamet Moments:  Asking, "So?"  "And?"  "So what?"

7:57:  Operative word theory:  Verbs are king (generic beer-label verbs, naturally), then Nouns, then Adjectives, Adverbs, and pronouns are the worst thing ever.

8:02:  Jayce just used a football analogy in a theatre.  Know your audience!

8:02:  Jayce's pet peeves:  canNOT, sirRAH.  And pronouns.

8:03:  The character is in the diction.  Clues to character are in word choice and in the way they use the words.

8:04:  Thought is the engine; thought is breath.  The breath is the fuel.  Words consume that fuel, therefore the words drive the action.

8:09:  Characters are not super-human; but they are at the highest edge of human experience. They are significant and grander than normal human existence.  It is language as an aphrodesiac.  It is language wearing a lampshade on its head and maybe regretting it in the morning, but it is necessary at the moment.

8:10:  John Barton:  There's nothing sillier than thinking this language is conversation or commonplace.  It's like a one-armed man rowing a boat.

8:11:  And in an hour, we've got a pretty good basic fundamental background of how to work on Shakespeare.  Well played, Mr. Tromsness.

8:12:  Break time.  Back in five.

8:22:  Rick is going from an "O" to now a lowercase "u" and is headed for a "V."  Well done, Rick.  I'm glad you know what that means.

8:23:  Coffee!!!!

8:24:  "Something that causes puckering in certain places."  Umm, really, Jayce?

8:37:  Jayce:  "The meter is the slip.  We don't have to show it..."

9:02:  Was that a line-reading, Jayce?

9:07:  Rain is beginning.

9:08:  Mr. Exposition!

9:21:  Disclosure, Discovery and Decision

9:52:  Feste might be Jewish?  L'Chaim!

9:56:  Jayce:  "They had some sort of 'fool throw-down.'"

10:24:  One more scene, 2.2, and we're done for the evening.  A good bit of table work, lots of good laughs and we'll be back tomorrow night for another night of reading.  Well, let it be....

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A New Home on the Interweb

Not that anyone really reads the blog, since - of late - we haven't really been writing the blog.  But in case you're wondering, the service that housed our old blog seems to have disappeared or eaten our blog or something.  So we're going to see how it goes over here on Blogger.  At least we're pretty sure that Google isn't going away any time soon.  So... there ya go!