It’s been a busy few weeks! As well as casting “Iphigenia” for the Rose Company a week last Monday (a very exciting prospect for late June, early July and beyond), ELART Productions is also slowly, but surely getting ready to perform at The Dell in Stratford on Saturday June 8th and we are all really looking forward to the experience. It’s getting scarily close now! (I’m desperately trying to stop myself looking at long-range weather forecasts; one of my grandmothers is addicted to weather news, so I’m even trying not to listen to her too closely when the subject of the weather comes up in conversation!)
It’s been great fun re-visiting the show. We performed it – not quite in this form or with quite this company – a couple of years ago and it was well-received by audiences, so it’s lovely to have a reason to play with it again. As I mentioned last post, the thinking behind it at the very start, was to devise an accessible and entertaining show that would appeal to young and old, while trying to see what it must have been like in Shakespeare’s day when women weren’t allowed on the professional stage. The comedy scenes have usually worked quite easily (well, as easily as anything ever does in a rehearsal room…), and, indeed, in the few rehearsals we’ve had to date, that has again been the case: Pyramus and Thisbe is a real romp; the 3 witches (not always played for laughs, I realise) are hilariously manic; even Cleopatra’s temper tantrum is humorously – and deliberately – OTT.
The scenes that most interest me as a director this time round, though, are some of the more serious ones. For example:
Will Portia convince as she manipulates the courtroom (admittedly dressed as a male-lawyer)?
Will the audience be on Juliet’s side as Lord Capulet rages at her for refusing to marry Paris?
Only time will tell – but (as our rehearsal photos below hopefully show) we are working hard to make these scenes as compelling, interesting and real as we can, so that our audience can experience a fully varied and entertaining ride through some of the famous Shakespearian scenes.
We hope we succeed!