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September 15, 2010 / Prof Cupcake.

life out here is dance or die

Ladies and gentleman we have begun our run-throughs! As we prep for moving to the actual theatre at the end of the week we are using our remaining time here at the practice studio to get the show as tight as we can. As director Nikolai Foster put it yesterday “we are looking to begin performing at the speed of thought.” Meaning we are working to reduce the lag between lines and get the performers reacting in real time to the stimulus around them. It is a change you can see in everything from the lines, to lyrics, to dance; the stage is fading away and we keep finding ourselves pulled deeper into the world of Alex Owens and the men and women of Pittsburgh PA. It’s a wonderful change to watch; all of these bare bone bits we have been working on becoming a full-bodied production. I particularly loved yesterdays run through, as it was the first time I had seen Matt Willis (playing Nick Hurley) in the Manhunt sequence. At our last run through Matt was unable to attend the rehearsal which left Victoria Hamilton-Barritt (Alex Owens) with the entertaining task of going on a date with herself. For those of us who are single, it was empowering to watch a strong independent woman taking herself out on the town (looking fabulous I might add in Sue and Jack’s costumes which are show stopping) Yet I am sure I was not the only one giggling in my seat as I watched Victoria fall in love, wrap her arms around air and take herself home. Hard at work! Yesterday’s run-through had none of that, those moments where one can’t help but smile at the campiness of the theatrical world. With a full cast firing on all cylinders the entire production was a joy to watch. The dancing has been honed and honed beyond my wildest dreams of how the human body could even move! Now we sit, cast and crews rapt while we watch people spinning faster than washing machines, blurring their bodies till they become more movement then man. But for me I think it is hearing the music develop that has been the most astounding. Where before we had talented singers singing; we now have characters evoking. Their lines carry with them the weight of themselves and one cannot help but be swept away into their own worlds. Not long now until we open, and there still is much to do, but ladies and gentleman, get ready Flashdance is going to blow you away. And as always Tom Hedley is a genius.

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