Our week of rehearsals is now over. It has been a rapid week and absolutely flown by. I think we would all have liked more time in rehearsals but I am happy that we have made the best of what time we had. Of course the proof of the pudding (or Steve’s Birthday cake – which was delicious) is in the eating. The performances next week will show us if we have made the right decisions and focussed on the right areas and this will inform our approach to rehearsals in Autumn.
Working with someone new to the show has brought in a valuable fresh perspective to Paper Tom. During the rehearsals there have been things in the show we’ve had to reconsider and it has been a bit scary to address and unravel aspects given our limitations on time. But I think this has really benefited the overall process and the show has a real freshness to it.
There have not been wholesale changes made to the text. I think we may have only changed 2 words since the script was finalised about a year ago prior to our performances at Buxton (that incidentally was version 23).
With a work that has a devised origin there is a tendency for things to be a bit more up for grabs in rehearsals, especially when the creators are present. You can sometimes be dazzled by the newness of something and think perhaps it might be better just because you haven’t seen it 100 times before. But on the flip side it’s also easy to get complacent with the work and just go along with something because that’s how its always been and you’ve kind of forgotten how it got like that. But it’s been a great rehearsal process being able to look at the characters in greater detail than before and fixing the performance without breaking the show.
So, when is a production is finished?
I think I find it’s usually when you run out of time and/or resources but perhaps it is more to do with there being an absence of challenge for all involved.