A long and busy day. We were called for rehearsal in the morning: notes and bits. Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. And the show is so complex that as much cleaning as there is to do, there seems like there is never enough time to get to everything. But bit by bit.
I spent my lunch with my parents. We grabbed a baguette sandwich and sat in the Knot Garden behind New Place. There is no house on the site at New Place, but there are foundations of the house that Shakespeare bought for his family when he came back to Stratford from London. And the garden behind it is exquisite, and open to the public, and a peaceful place to have lunch.
Back to rehearsal for to work and clean Dreamboats onstage. And then a half-hour call to get into full costume for media and photo call.
Jenny Young and I were interviewed by Nala Ayad for CBC’s The National. That’s always fun. “Just a couple of working actors on the National News…” . Not bad. They also shot a sequence from the show, and an interview with Josette. And there was a media shot taken for newspapers.
Then only a one hour break and we were back for a singing and voice warm-up before the our final preview. It went really well. Oh there were mistakes and wobbly bits, but that will be the nature of the beast as we continue the run. The great thing is Penny, our fearless and wonderful Penny, is establishing a conversational relationship with the audience right from the top, so they are with her and her story. She is the thread through the play, and we, The Maids, are the fringy bits, the details of her imagination and memory. That seems to be clear in the storytelling now. And that is what we have been aiming for from the beginning.
Go directly home. Do not pass GO, do not collect two hundred dollars. Do not be lured by The Dirty Duck. Due to my email woes I did have to go and sit in the Courtyard for half an hour to send the blog and contact a few folks at home. I am so grateful for the support from friends, colleagues, and readers!
Oh. And a bit of a special thing for all of us: Margaret Atwood sent each one of us a bouquet of flowers! There were tears. It’s all a bit overwhelming when little kindnesses like that appear. Thank-you Margaret. For giving Penelope and The Maids your unique voice.