First rehearsal last night trying out lights and sound, which will look and sound pretty Noirish in the dark Piper Club on the day. It was a bit stressful, especially as Alan Lane, our mentor, was there. Alan is from Slung Low in Leeds and his latest work was with the York-based Blood+Chocolate; a community piece of theatre using immersive sound techniques, something our sound specialist, Tom, and I are particularly interested and involved in (look out for our next production THE CLAPHAM GIRLS’ WAR).
Anyway, Alan soon made us feel at ease and watched the first run-through, after which he gave some useful feedback on highlighting the contrasting elements of the show – the make-believe, Noir/Bogart/Bacall world of Philip the security guard versus the mundane, living-rough existence of Eddie, the intruder.
He also gave advice to Ronni on how to give fleeting impressions of Lauren Bacall through stylised gestures and posture. Ronni didn’t want to portray Bacall in a sexual way, as she didn’t see this in the films she’d been watching of Bacall. Alan pointed out ways of developing the stage character without doing this. He overlooked the odd script in hand at occasional moments – the Easter hols have eaten away at our rehearsal schedule.
After his initial feedback Alan watched a second run-through, and the advice he gave had obviously been taken on board as the first five minutes of the play suddenly came to life. Thank you Alan.
Author: Barrie Wheatley, Director, Theatre on the Edge, Film Noir at the Monica