Whispers from the Wings

Tremble with Kemble

May 14, 2013

TitusAndronicus ast in black and whiteIt's something of a relief having only one play to focus on for a while, as we go into technical rehearsals for Titus and get ready for previews on Thursday.

I find Shakespeare's language easier to grasp than Middleton's as the iambic pentameter beats out a rhythm you can almost feel in your body. We're in a good place: the experimental stage keeps the play from going stale and, sitting, watching, I'm hearing words I hadn't heard before - but we've done so many different scene drafts now I find it difficult to keep track on what worked when and where.

'Remember that time Titus…and you moved…' Nope!

There's a safe security in a structured blocking. I know that if all else fails, if the theatre burns down, so long as I stand here I will be absolutely fine. That's rubbish of course as humans respond instinctively - blocking can either be a safety net or a smothering comfort blanket.

It's perversely lucky Lavinia doesn't have much in the way of lines, however when she's unable to speak she's desperately trying to - when no one understands her it's extremely frustrating.

Both Ann Yee and Stephen Kemble have been working with me on getting both my body and breath to a place of trauma and shock. Nasty talk: I need to be aware of nerve endings and torn skin.

To recreate a similar breathing pattern to that of someone having a panic attack Stephen has me lie on my back, legs at right angles to my body. I flex my feet and try to put them over my head. The tension created by flexing my feet and engaging my thigh and stomach muscles sends a shudder through my body and my breath comes in gasps. We call it 'Tremble with Kemble'.

Last rehearsal tomorrow before we go into the theatre.

I'm very tired.

Hobbit sightings in Rhovanion: 0

I'll keep looking.

by Rose Reynolds  |  1 comment

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May 24, 9:12am

You were amazing! my first Shakespeare play last night (other than school productions; i'm a teacher) and I was blown away. Hope the press do it justice.

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