Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Try not to suck

We had a good rehearsal last night, I think - the play was run, worked through bit-by-bit, and then run again. Good questions were asked, good choices were made, and by the end of the evening there was a noticeable improvement in both the look and the sound of the entire piece.

A small step, perhaps, but an important one for me, as I soldier on in my quest for creative renewal. To be honest I was exhausted last night - between the early morning wake-up (plus the light sleep the night before), a day of heavy farm work, four hours of production work, and the oppressive heat, I had to hold onto the side of the barn just to stay upright. Despite this I think we had one of our better rehearsals.

Such is the lifeblood of theatre.

But I can't rest on my laurels, or congratulate myself on a job well done - at least not yet. A good base like this must be built upon, improved upon, and the opportunity must not be missed. Seize the moment. Suck less. But how?

Certainly my preparations for the next rehearsal are part of it - I must take some time to sit down and really think about what I would like that rehearsal to accomplish (and the one after that, for that matter). But I usually do that without being consciously aware of it anyways and besides, we're now back to the shows that I've written, so I'm back on familiar turf - there's only so much a director can do to get inside a playwright's head.

I could pour the energy into organization - I'm slowly cleaning up and re-arranging all my scene stock, props, costumes, lighting/sound equipment and stage management supplies, as well as digitizing and sorting all paper and media inventory (I seem to have accumulated a lot of stuff). But that's an ongoing project, one better suited to brain-dead Friday afternoons and frigid winter nights than today, when the creative juices are flowing so vigorously.

I think the big winner will be the new play that I'm working on - an as-yet-unnamed post-apocalyptic action-adventure-romance. I had planned on working on it today anyways, but already I've had a brainwave that will make my time with it all the more productive. While this play won't be hitting the boards any time soon I hope it will eventually turn out to be the best play I've ever written, and in my attempt not to suck when it comes to making theatre a new personal best would most definitely be a step in the right direction.

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