If I could actually grow facial hair, it might look something like this...
belindashort had some fun with makeup during one of the dress rehearsals.
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As my freestyle project was coming to a close, the production of Jesus Christ Superstar shifted into high gear...
After the tournament on Saturday (which, of course, included some late night post-tourney shenanagins), I was in for the dreaded long Sunday rehearsal which was scheduled to eat the entire back half of the day beginning at noon and including a pitch-in dinner. After that, it was dress rehearsals on Monday and Tuesday night, a preview night on Wednesday, and opening night on Thursday with additional performances on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. In all, it was an 8-day stretch of JCS madness.
The set was just barely reaching completion by that point. That meant that we didn’t have much time to realize all of the blocking that we had been imagining with the set up to this point. I think the set came out a lot larger than anyone had imagined. It required a lot of adjustments as people realized they had been standing or moving through places that they couldn’t. Not to mention that the upper level of the set was a good 8 feet up. I don’t think you realize just how high that really is until you see it.
There were a lot of technical issues with lighting and sound. Lighting cues were basically just being created on that Sunday. Microphones were somewhat problematic getting levels set correctly and, in some cases, getting them to work at all. There were definitely some miscues and sound issues through the first weekend of shows. However, these things continued to improve over the course of the run and were pretty solid by the end.belindashort came on board to help out with makeup for the show. It was certainly good to get to hang with her for the duration of the run. She came in, took charge of the situation, and did a fantastic job! It had been over a year since I had seen her previously. I hope, now that the show is over, the gap before I see her again isn’t nearly as long.
And then, costumes… By the time we were starting dress rehearsals, we still hadn’t even seen our costumes. Our costumer came in a whirlwind and promised we’d have our costumes by intermission of our rehearsal. A few costumes came out, but many of them had some serious fitting issues. And let’s just say that I left that night still not seeing any of my costumes…and I was not alone.
Several cast and crew members scrambled through some long nights and begged, borrowed, and stole from their churches and other theaters’ costume shops over the next couple days. It was pot luck costume chaos, but everything eventually worked out.
Preview night was little better than a dress rehearsal. It was certainly nice to have an audience, but I’m glad they weren’t a paying audience. The show got better each night, and I think we had a really great show that first Saturday. Everything seemed to go pretty smoothly and we had a great energy that felt terrific and I hope was also great to watch.
I hosted a party at the Ho-House on Friday night. There was obviously plenty to do, but it was a bit of a different experience for me. Most of the people that come to the house are already familiar with the games that I have. In this case, with the exception of DDR, most people had never seen nor even heard of most of them. We definitely had some fun and funny moments. It was good to get to hang out with that group of people in a “non-work“ setting . We ‘d had plenty of opportunities to socialize during rehearsals , but this was the first chance to really do only that without an overarching task at hand.
I think we had all run out of steam by Sunday (day 8) though. A lot of people seemed to be in rather sour moods. Energy levels were down and I think the show was only so-so as a result. Ironically, tempos were much, much faster than usual and I dubbed the show “Jesus Christ Superspeed.”
It was nice to have Monday and Tuesday off to relax. Then it was back at it on Wednesday for a “brush up rehearsal.” I think we made it through the overture straight and then hijinks ensued. There were several cast members absent from this rehearsal, so we had some impromptu stand-ins—sometimes more than one per role.
Over the course of the “rehearsal” many people started ad-libing and flat out just making up lyrics, blocking, etc. It was quite a hilarious romp. I mean, if our crucified Jesus is striking a Michael Jackson crotch-grabbing pose and I run up and kiss him on the mouth, all hell had obviously broken loose. I don’t think it was probably a very productive rehearsal other than a much needed stress release and morale booster.
All the goofing off didn’t seem to hurt the show any. The second weekend played out much like the first. I think we started a little higher than the previous week and once again improved—peaking on Saturday again. I think that was probably our best show of the whole run.
Sunday had a lower energy level again and a few mistakes. After the show, we went through the process of cleaning and packing everything up and tearing down the set. It’s was kind of sad “disassembling” what amounted to three months of all our lives. In one respect, I was looking forward to being free of the responsibility and have some time to myself again. But on the other hand, I knew I would miss both the experience and the people.
I was very happy to meet and work with all the people in the cast and crew. I hope that I have established at least a few lasting friendships as a result, but I know that there’s a good chance that some of them I may never see again. Now that I’ve been through it, I’m definitely interested in doing theater work again—just not right away. I’d like to at least pretend to have a little free time for awhile first.