Ends and beginnings
May, again dominated by the Matilda Tour (which played all month in Sunderland) saw the end of one process and very much the start of another.
The show itself continues to settle into its rhythm. The sheer effort it takes to put on each performance is quite like no other show I've worked on. It takes over six hours to prepare the production for a Monday performance, over three hours on any other given day and even the cast have to be in almost two hours beforehand. But the theatrical experience that each audience experiences each time it totally worth it.
The process that came to an end was officially our rehearsal period. 169 days after teaching "Bruce" to a load of kids in a hall in London, we had our dress rehearsal for the 2nd cover understudies. That now means every child is rehearsed and every adult company member knows the tracks they perform as well as the tracks they cover. Stage management are happy that everyone knows technically what they are doing, and wigs & wardrobe are happy with the look of every character. Oh, and I'm of course delighted with how everyone is singing their roles! The "cover run" was well-timed, as one day later saw some company members having to cover these exact roles, which they of course did brilliantly. In fact, the whole company pulled together magnificently to maintain our spectacular show.
The one that begins? Rehearsals. Again. We have now cast our next set of children who will start performances in September. They initially rehearse in London at the end of this month before joining us on tour in August so that they, too, can be teched & dressed into the production. More exciting times await and we can be sure (although it was never a surprise) that this tour will never get boring!
The show moves to Milton Keynes next week for a 4-week run. We'll continue to prep for these rehearsals from there. And, who knows? More understudies may get the opportunity to get out in front of an audience.