The set is like a cell - long walls of white materiel on three side, one door leading up some stairs, little widows up at the top of the walls. Tim wants a shadowy figure to be behind the walls, O'Brian, stalking the stage unseen. Interesting.
Got my notebook and my In-and-Out burger, I'm ready for rehearsal. I'm still figuring there are going to be a lot of changes. I'm used to the Mime Troupe, people giving you notes on a script you've been working on for a month. This is so different.
So far Tim has been very open to conversation about the show. He isn't insecure or panicky about other opinions - the whole theatre is very open to questions and working through pieces in a way that we at the Mime Troupe don't have time for. Not saying it's better, just different. The cast is really fun to watch. Brent, who's playing Winston, is one of the coolest actor's I've ever met. He exudes a confidence that is, well, calming. I've worked with alot of people, but seldom have I worked with anybody so at ease with themselves. Main thing today was just trying to make sense of the script,, and me answering questions about what the hell I was thinking.
After rehearsal I stuck around for a workshop. Tim was teaching a commedia class to the students and interns at the Gang, and it was facinating to see the similarities and differences with SFMT workshops. The focus of this workshop was emotional States - how does this character feel, embody, express any of the four States - anger,love, fear, hate - inspired by a piece of music.
First the workshoppers picked commedia characters, and dressed in full costume, make-up, and masks. Then, six at a time, they would take the stage, and when Tim would play a fairly chaotic bit of music - I think he said it was from La Strada - without moving they would embody whatever State they felt. And when they are ready the person at the point of the group would begin to move, copied with others. So you have a fearful Lover, a happy Pantolone, and so on all going through the same movements, but in different and ever changing States. it was great. The other thing was they were not to try to create a scene, or be funny. And no silent miming of some off stage point of focus, "Godzilla is out there! Over the audience! You, audience, can't see it, but I, the actor, can - and look at how well I act terrified of a threat that you will never see!" Without that, the actor's had to stay inside, make it organic. So it was very powerful. Great.
Now I'm back at the hotel, watching Kurasawya's adaptation of Gorky's "the Lower Depths." Got it and Renoir's adaptation for Christmas.