This was a busy year for me for theatre. I finished off the second half of my great VUE Weekly Season Grand Prize and also had a few fabulous projects of my own on the go. This is What I Did, and the next post will be What I Saw...
What I Did:
I started the year with Auditions for ELOPE's The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. It feels so long ago... I was blown away by the auditions and was thrilled with the cast I was able to assemble. There were new faces and familiar ones and the cast had that incredible kind of synergy that made it a most joyful experience. The show surprised a lot of people. I had so many people tell me that they were not expecting much because of the title but then when they came to see it, they both laughed and cried and loved it. I did too. So much so that I saw all but 2 of the 8 performances. Of course, I missed the most incredible one where the power went out and they finished the show in the lobby. I followed at home on FB and Twitter and heard from cast and audience members about how absolutely wonderful the experience was.
From Cradle to Stage at Walterdale - the annual new work festival. I also set designed and mastered-painted that. Luckily the run for it nested between the two weeks of Putnam so I could make it work but I was stretched pretty thin. My goal was to create two sets that didn't feel thrown together and that could share the same space. This doesn't always happen as the focus for this festival is on the scripts, but I wanted these playwrights to have a fully realized world for their scripts. I think I made it work. I had some challenges with people on the team who didn't quite understand the lines of communication, but in the end I was happy with what was on stage. Sometimes you just have to have longer conversations to get what will work for everyone, and Walterdale is about learning so hopefully some learning happened.
I started directing a piece for Fringe 2013, but we were on the Wait List and never came off in time to make it work. With 3 of the cast in other shows we anticipated conflicts so we let it go. It was fun to dip the toe into the work, but letting it go cleared the way for my new job at the Citadel. I don't know if it would have been as smooth a start if I was still committed to directing.
This fall I rounded off the year with Proof at Walterdale. I have been in love with this script for a few year now and was blessed with the support of one of the finest teams I have ever worked with. And then I got a tremendous cast. What a cast. I will be honest, I was spoiled at auditions, there were several fine casts in there, but I was truly pleased with the one I chose. Such dedication and commitment to the show and my process. It was so wonderful to see onstage. I was very, very proud of it. The only fly in the ointment was the relatively low attendance. I will admit being disappointed by some of the no-shows, but the crappy weather, the lack of media coverage and the Christmas season wasn't doing us any favours. I know I have to let that go. I don't get to everything myself because I get busy, so I can't expect everyone else to. We did the show for those who came and everyone seemed to love it so I think I can be happy with that. Plus, my Mom, Dad, Sister and 2 of my Brothers came to see it and that hasn't happened in forever! That was pretty cool.