London Bridge (is falling down, falling down…)

Not really. Only in theory.

Well, and not even in theory. People are just falling off it. Very carefully.

The finale of Oliver!—where Oliver is reunited with Mr. Brownlow and Bill Sykes is killed—takes place on and near London Bridge. Since we have our lovely scaffolded set, the top part is, bien sur, the bridge. Some cast members are up there, and others, like me, are on the stage floor, looking up at the bridge.

Yesterday was the first time we blocked that scene, and it’s rather complex, so it took awhile. Nancy dies, Sykes runs off with Oliver, Sykes re-appears with Oliver, Sykes is shot, Oliver wiggles free, the crowd goes to look for Fagin, Fagin appears, etc., etc. So a lot of people moving about.

The blocking came at the end of an acting rehearsal, where the entire show was run sans music. That made some things go faster (the beginning goes a lot faster when it’s just spoken lines), but there were also a few occasions where the prompters had to interject and fix lines. Some multiple takes of more complex scenes—like Oliver’s escape from the Sowerberrys’—ensured that everyone knew what they were doing.

My scene was run a few times. We had a misbehaving prop (Mr. Bumble’s top hat did not want to roll about the way it is SUPPOSED to roll about), and a few questions regarding lines and timing of entrances and exits. But on the whole it went well.

It was a less crowded rehearsal, since the only people there were the ones who had spoken lines. And things will move a lot faster once we have our tech crew aboard—which they will be, starting Saturday, which is the official kick-off of Tech Week.

So this week’s rehearsal schedule:

M: Dance rehearsals (so I’m not called tonight)

T: Act I

W; Act II

Th: Music Tech (music only, with orchestra for the first time)

Sat.: TECH WEEK

We Got Rhythm

If it’s Saturday…there’s rehearsal.

The adults didn’t have to be at the PAC until 10:30, because the kids were being rehearsed first, but I was a little early and got to see “Be Back Soon” and a few runs of “Food, Glorious Food!” Our indefatigable choreographer was there, working with the kids, so that helped, and there’s another dance rehearsal scheduled for tomorrow.

The kids are so. darn. cute. (Have I mentioned that? They are.)

After “Food”, the kids plus Jodi and Kurt (Widow Corney and Mr. Bumble, respectively) rehearsed “Oliver!”. By then a lot of adults were filing in, so once they finished we got ready to rehearse “Consider Yourself.” I had my prop book and basket with me, so that I could practice handling them. My general theory of rehearsal is the more time you can rehearse in shoes, costumes, and with props, the better. It makes it that much easier by the time you open. (Shoes are coming once we start Tech Week. They should be broken in, because I did tech week + 9 Parade performances in them, but you never know.)

“Consider Yourself” is coming. It was better than on W (having the choreographer there helped). It’s a lot of people moving at the same time. I’m sure once it’s down it will look great. (I’m on the scaffolding, so I can’t really tell what it looks like, but it looks nice from above!) After running that a few times, we did “Oom-Pah-Pah” (so, so much fun, love that number), and then were done for the day.

Today I have rehearsal from 2-4—it’s an acting rehearsal—all lines, no music. So it shouldn’t be too bad, except everyone is supposed to be off-book. We’ll see how that goes. πŸ™‚ (Yes, I have all three of my lines memorized.) Near the end, we’re going to block the London Bridge scene (where Bill Sykes kills himself, and Oliver is returned safely to Mr. Brownlow and Mrs. Bedwin). So after Noon Mass at St. Pat’s, I’m running to HIlliard, getting a spot of lunch, then rehearsing.

Upcoming rehearsals:

T: Act I run-through

W: Act II run-through

Th: Music Tech (this is the show with just music. For more on this, go here. (it’s Part II, so scroll down a bit)

F: Off

Sat.: FIRST DAY OF TECH WEEK!!!!!! 9-1

Sun: Fourth of July, so no rehearsal