Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Rehearsing in Dresses

Rehearsing in Dresses
On Monday evening we had our final dress rehearsal for Houston Grand Opera's "Beatrice and Benedict." It was great fun! FINALLY we had a small audience to play to, and what a difference it makes to a piece like this - it begs for an audience to participate in the frolicking and merry-making, etc. Since day one there has been a wonderful atmosphere with this particular team: a wonderful cast full of energy and humor, a great directing team with wonderful insight and a deft hand at timing the comedy, fabulous musical values under the baton of an energetic and positive maestro and now a receptive audience that arrives ready to lighten their mood and get carried away for a few hours! Woo HOO!

I ADORE the rehearsal process (provided it's stimulating, challenging and productive...) for it's a place of exploration and discovery, as well as often building friendships and a family atmosphere, so it can be a tiny bit melancholic to bring that process to a close. But then the audience arrives, and the work we have done takes on a life of its own, energy infuses the stage, and we're off! I decided a number of years ago to always aim to ENJOY myself on the stage, for this life, this process, this career is so demanding, draining and tough, that if the pay-off of the performance isn't there, it simply isn't worth it to me. So to finally have the audience jump into the equation is a thrilling moment, and we all enjoyed the final rehearsal immensely. I have a feeling the opening night audience is going to enjoy themselves a lot.

If you're interested in hearing a bit more about our take on B&B, Norman Reinhardt, the dashing Benedict, and I had a little video conversation for the HGO website about our roles: if you have a MAC you can see it here, and if you have a PC, you can view it here.

So I took the opportunity to capture the above photo of Ailish Tynan, who sings the role of Hero, relaxing in her costume between acts. Yes, there are some big dresses in this show! But little did I know that my dresser and my dear friend, Larissa, was capturing my capturing of Ailish on her cell-phone! I suppose no-one is safe!!!!


Rachel Budde said...

I worked tech for a production of Beatrice and Benedict here in Chicago a couple of years ago, and was surprised at how much I loved it. The trio remains one of my favorite pieces of music in all the repertoire.

poltergeist said...

great pics! those dresses are fabolous,but how can you move with that? They seem pretty heavy...

I hope you have a wonderful time doing Beatrice and Benedict!!

Susan said...

Wow those are BIG dresses! Do you ever get tripped up? Do you have to go up and down stairs? And the most important question of all... how do you manage to go to the bathroom????
Happy Halloween? :)

Drammy said...

what fabulous wigs!

Yankeediva said...

The are enormous dresses, to be sure - and trust me, the phrase, "don't you trip, don't you trip!" keeps running through my head!!! Regards to restroom trips - the only real hope is to take care of your business before getting into those huge hoops!

Beth said...

Just found your blog, and I'm so excited to see your interview with Norman - such a great colleague and overall good guy! Wish I could see the show.

Virginia Janet said...
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[Lilith] said...

I just so this little vid in which you discuss about Beatrice, and in these tiny bits of the play I could see, you sound so funny! ^^

You really made me think of a singing Emma Thompson!



[Lilith] said...

Oh, btw! I talked to Kyle Ketelsen after Nozze di Figaro yesterday (it was amaaaazingly beautiful... Emma Bell as Contessa was touching, and his Figaro, incredible. Sophie Koch's Cherubino was fun too. Oh, well, I loved everybody) and he told me your DVD of Don Giovanni at the ROH will be out next May! I'm looking so forward to it :)



PS: We miss you in Barcelona! ;)