After two nights off (for most), the cast was ready to spring back into action, and yet there was a bit of surrealism surrounding the fact that the final dress rehearsal and the initial performance had been separated in such a fashion. At first it was hard to believe we'd reached our opening night! But as ever, we adjusted and moved forward. The evening followed the previously-rehearsed pattern of dressing at Babcock, warm-ups along the walk to Benedict, and participation in fight call. As the ticket and concession stands were set up and props began to be placed, the playing area felt understandably much busier; final preparations were under way.
At about 6:30, a group of performers was chosen to place themselves at various designated points of access for pre-show greetings and direction of patrons to the ticket table. This was enjoyable as it gave us our first glimpses of many who chose to spend their evening with us, and some initial fun interaction. As more audience members arrived, some with lawn chairs, still others with coolers or baskets, the ground behind the green ropes marking the audience section began gradually to fill in like a jigsaw puzzle.
As showtime came and we performers took our places, we finally experienced the uniqueness that sitting on the grass near the audience provided, as they were abuzz with general conversation/anticipation directly within earshot. Finally, as the curtain speech was given by Artistic Director Geoff Kershner and the doors swung open for the Prince's Prologue, a hush fell over the audience in a silence that signified their instant attentiveness as those famous opening words were uttered.
The Montague-side actors' blankets and benches
And so we began. Romeo and Juliet: performance #1!!
... what, you expect me to tell everything that happens?
Come see the show! :)
It is always a pleasure to be able to tell that playgoers have genuinely enjoyed the production put on for them, and tonight was no exception. Their warm applause and heartfelt comments afterwards let us know for sure: we have an amazing production, and we're in for an amazing run! A huge thank you goes out to all who joined us for our special first performance, and to the many who plan to come yet!