Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Stuck!


Saturday night we stuck the landing.

While I had a great time in all of the shows this last weekend, Saturday’s show was by far the most fun. To be honest I can’t even remember how we ended the show, but every scene in the second half was strong enough to have been the end of the show. The first half was none too shabby either.

Mandy brought an audience member up on stage to read lines from Ibsen for a Playbook scene. Audience member Brian overacted fabulously resulting in probably the best Playbook scene I’ve ever witnessed. Having an audience member do it makes that game so much better. It should always be played that way.

I had a lot of fun singing in the show, which, if you’re a frequent reader, you’ll know isn’t my strong suit. From the “Monster Sex Machine” song as puppets to both songs from “Columbus! The Rock Opera”, I never felt like I was in over my head. Bringing back the chorus from “There’s a New World On the Horizon” during the song “We Were Here First” will go down as one of my fondest improv memories.

That and the subtle feeling of everyone else in the cast and everyone in the audience seeing Christian and I loading our muskets without ever having to say what we were doing. The cast developed a wonderful group mind that grew to include the audience itself. That feeling makes improv so special for performers and audiences alike.

Come this weekend! We’ve got almost the same cast every night this weekend, which should lead to some great ensemble work.

**

More Un-Scripted on the Web: This guy saw our show a couple weeks ago and blogged about it.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Stick Your Landings


I've been somewhat remiss in my blogging about this show, mostly because I went to Japan and missed two weekends. Then I got busy at work this week and didn't have time to blog about rehearsal on Tuesday.

We did genre work on Tuesday. We like to do genre scenes at the Un-Scripted Theater Company. We practiced Genre Switch (which I hadn't played in years) where you switch back and forth between two genres. Genre Slide, where you start in one genre and slowly transition the scene into another genre by the end. Genre Roller Coaster, where you do a scene and keep changing the genres throughout. And Genre Combo, where you take two genres and combine them into one scene. That's probably my favorite.

In the show tonight, we played some genre roller-coaster, using a "magic bell" that would transform the scenes. It was fun.

The show tonight was a lot of fun. It was a very solid, good show. It would have been a spectacular show, but we didn't stick the landing. The damned show just wouldn't end. The last 15 minutes or so were hell, not only because the show wouldn't end, but because it was about a million degrees in the theater by then. The show finally ended with a prolonged whimper at 10:07. Jesus god, shoot me now.

Why wouldn't it end? We couldn't find it. We couldn't find the button. The capper. The tag. What's more, we all had ideas on how to end it and kept fighting each other for control of the scene so we could push our idea. We just needed to let it go and let it end and stop trying to force it.

Had we not performed the third half of the show, it would have been amazing. As it was, it was a good solid show.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Opening Night!

Wow, the show last night was so much fun! I’m not sure if I was wrong and shouldn’t have been worried at all about opening night, or if I was right and being worried kept us all engaged and made for a great show. Either way, we had a really solid show for the first night of a run.

Yes, we learned some things to make the show better. Christian was really single entendre with his transitions last night, but he took that note well. What do I mean by that? Well, instead of taking an element from the previous scene and using it in a different way in the next scene, he was taking an element from the previous scene and using it literally in the next scene, which led to some confusion about whether or not we were in the same world.

I think we also would have been better served doing “second scenes” later in the show rather than immediately after the first scene. We got some feedback from people in the audience that they either wanted us to use the themes we developed more or less (such that they weren’t themes). From inside the show, I really enjoyed that no theme overly dominated the show. I’m not sure I’d like doing it that way. A big part of the success of this show is going to be the cast enjoying themselves, so I’ll have to watch that carefully.

I did some fun characters that I’ve never really done before. I played one to introduce a scene that even while I was doing it I was thinking “This is someone new. I really like him though.” Unfortunately, as soon as the show was over, I could not remember the character at all. I’m not sure I could recreate him. D’oh.