Saturday, May 30, 2009

What is happening right now...

Jackson: Mom, I smell spiders.
Me: Really? What do they smell like?
Jackson: ...spiders.

I am sitting on my couch waiting for the stove timer to beep, telling me my macaroni is ready to be drained in anticipation of the packet of powdered orange goodness that will transform it into macaroni and cheese. I am such a gourmet. It isn't even Kraft, it's generic. What does that say about me? I am not sure I want to know.

So indeed the Chronicle did pan my show, calling us too loud, too fast and too broad for a Noel Coward British comedy of manners. Of course any of you who have ever done any live theatre, especially of the unpaid variety, know the mantra of comedic shows. Say it with me, please! "Louder, faster, funnier!" We were just doing what we have learned the audiences like. And our audiences are enjoying the show. And this particular critic has a reputation for being a self-important ass-hat. We have been receiving condolences from other local theatre artists who have been 'Pineo'd' as we are now calling it. So whatever. As my friend Andy said, all publicity is good publicity.

Last night the show was sold out. And we had a pretty darn good show. A few little ups and downs. But all in all, it went well. The problem we are having is with the air conditioning system of the City Theatre. It is loud. Very loud. And situated directly over the stage. The initial plan was to run the AC before the show and during the intermissions, but to leave it off during the performance. But it isn't working out. It is simply getting too hot. With a full house of 75 in close proximity to each other, the stage and the hot stage lights, we simply can't leave it off. They are miserable and so are we. So the stage manager has been experimenting with timing to turn it off and on based on which scene is happening. But the only outcome is that for half the show the audience has to strain to hear us and the other half they are fretting about the heat. And it is very distracting onstage for us to hear the very loud AC turn off and on. So after the show last night we talked about it as a cast and decided to cave to the Texas heat and turn the damn thing on and leave it on. It is hard to hear in the back two rows, so we have to really work to be louder so those people can hear. But the stifling, distracting environment is no better. So with more of my effort having to go to being heard, my character might lose a little life and luster. Especially since she is shy and uncomfortable a lot. It is hard to act 'quiet' when you have to shout your lines. Sigh. But there isn't any choice.

Moral is, if you are coming to the show, don't sit in the back. And get there early cause parking is somewhat limited anyway.

David has started rehearsals for Big River and has taken Jackson with him to a couple of dance and vocal rehearsals. Jackson makes me smile because he really wants to participate in the whole thing. If they are learning dance, he wants to stand up with them and try to do what they are doing. And he gets frustrated that he can't do it. He says "They all do it better than me!" He's not quite four! He expects that he can do the dance that the teen boys are learning. He is unforgiving of himself. And during the vocal rehearsal he sits with them and holds a libretto book just like they do. Because I have been playing the soundtrack in my car for months he knows these songs and actually sang the correct words at the correct time just like the chorus.

This morning we were heading to a rehearsal and he asked if he could be in the show. David told him he was still a bit too young, but that he could be in lots of shows when he gets older. About ten minutes later we pulled up to the dance studio and Jackson sadly started to cry. We asked him what was wrong and he said, "My Daddy said I can't be in the show..." Poor boy, it was very sad. We told him that he could join the dancers if he stayed out of the way and that today he could be 'in the show.' I guess that was a lie. He can't be in the show. But he can be in the rehearsals as long as they are learning things and he doesn't disrupt anything. And in a couple of years he can do the summer camps at the Palace and be in those shows. And someday maybe a mainstage.

So my husband has a broken pinky toe. He accidentally kicked a roller blade that was hidden under a garbage bag in the garage about a week ago. His poor toe swelled and bruised up and has been giving him grief enough that he went to the clinic yesterday and had it X-rayed. And it is broke. Not much they can do about it, though. He has to tape it up to the toe next to it for a month. And take Advil. And seek sympathy from his wife.


Ronni said...

I read the review. It wasn't nearly as bad as I expected, from reading your blog. He liked the breakfast scene...

I have to say, though, that I am tickled about the new word on the Austin theater scene. "Pineo'd." Perfect.

I have noticed, over the years, that he does seem to prefer innovative and avant gard theater, rather than the entertainment that many audiences expect. Y'all did very well to get praise of any kind from him, given the nature of the play.

Barbara said...

So sorry David has a broken toe. That really hurts. Work it David. Back rubs help.