Feb 26, 2006
Breakfast with Michael McShane. I haven't seen Michael in a long time, and like I said, he's a thin willow of he previous Sequoia self. Michael and I did some Shakespeare in SF along time ago, and he worked with Velina at ACT. Then he went on to "Who Line is it, Anyway?" in England, play Friar Tuck in the Kevin Costner "Robin Hood", lotsa stuff. We went and got some eggs, tried to catch each other up. He told me he and Greg Proops used to wonder what drugs I was on - I was always so chirpy and bouncy and political - then they realized I wasn't on anything - they were stoned. But he said he was proud of me forging a career doing what I feel is important. It made me feel all chirpy and bouncy.
Tonight was my first feeling of "Uh Oh." We still haven't gotten through the first act, and have no idea how long it is. And it's hard for the actor's to get any sense of character throughline. It is a short rehearsal period, and we started fast, but things seem to be slowing down. Tim decided to not have the Party Members start the show as droning functionaries, which means the rest of the first act has a differnt pace. The two atcor's playing First and Second Party Members are trying to figure out their relationship, and everybody wants to know what exactly I was thinking when I came up with this concept - which is Winston is being forced to re-enact his "thoughtcrimes", which he documented in hes diary. To help him with this confession are four Party Members, who play everybody in the diary, including Winston. And all the while, as they are exposed to his crimes, tempted, and reacting to each other, they are all under the blank gaze of an unseen telescreen, and Interrogator. Cool, huh? Well, try having your cool concept dissected by some of the most incisive actors around. So my "Uh Oh" isn't about the production, I guess. It's fine. I'm just not used to being in this position.