Managing tension!

November 26, 2009

ALISON PORTER, Community Ensemble Participant

Not wishing to hog the blog I thought I’d wait a while before my next instalment. Added to that I’ve been completely shattered trying to juggle work and rehearsals, not helped much by the erratic train schedules over the weekend. It’s amazing how waiting in an atmosphere of combined group tension wears you out, it seems to start small and then be multiplied by the number of people in the room and fed back to you 20 times bigger – the closest example I can think of would be the queue outside the nurse’s office at school waiting for a tetanus jab. I’ve noticed the professionals hide in corners so I thought I’d try this. On Wednesday I retreated to the small space between the two clothes rails and adopted the Alexander resting position, I got some funny looks but it seemed to work.

Tension does strange things to the mind, body and inanimate objects, Joyia’s already mentioned missing her mark, for me it was the face powder. All I was trying to do was cover a shiny patch on my cheek when the top fell off and the whole lot spilt over my costume. The dressers looked horrified but recovered a little when they realised I wasn’t on for at least another 30 minutes. Latana helpfully took a photo at this point and one of the dressers ran off hot foot to find a clothes brush from another dressing room. I got the impression that they were trained for just this kind of crisis. By the time she got back I’d managed to get rid of most of the powder but I wasn’t going to miss the chance to be dusted down by the brush they apparently use on Ping, Pang and Pong’s gloves in Turandot.

Otherwise the dress rehearsal seemed to go as well as dress rehearsals generally do (or don’t), the children haven’t done anything too outrageous yet but I guess they’re saving that for the full audience. And talking of audiences we’re no longer in the anonymous bubble of rehearsal, from Friday people we know will be watching. Still I don’t need to worry too much about that if my friend Jonathan is anything to go by. He arrived late for the dress rehearsal, completely missed my big moment in Part 1 and commented over a coffee later ‘I think I may have seen you at the end, did you carry on some flowers?’

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