Today I’m off to rehearse with Jess for her new musical duo The Bluebirds – to inject a bit of theatre into their music hall/soiree act. Then tonight going to Circus Space to see the Third Year degree showcase.
Today I chaired a debate at the Young Vic on women in theatre. It was amazing. We had Deborah Paige and Erica Whyman on the panel and they were both incredibly articulate and interesting in a very gentle way. A good day.
Though sad news about the Arts Council cuts – but also invigorating, and I’m really pleased for all the new NPOs – all well deserved.
Had a lovely meeting this morning with Ade at Jacksons Lane about the future life of Stc, then jumped on the train to Stoke-on-Trent to have a meeting with Theresa Heskins, Artistic Director of the New Vic. Stoke is pretty hilly I’ve discovered, so it’s been a day of ups and downs, but hopefully the meeting will go well and then after I’m staying up to see the show – her production of The Rivals, which is a play I’ve never seen so hopefully that’ll be good too.
Spent the morning working on the libretto for the secret puppet operas…hopefully won’t remain secret for much longer. Then the afternoon marching for the Belarus Free Theatre. Also spent most of Saturday marching against the cuts. My back hurts from all the marching, but my conscience is feeling pretty healthy.
Spent the morning working on a massive document for Stc that is like the best spreadsheet in the world, with different rows for aerial, music, lighting etc plots as well as to show which actors are in which scene. Plus it’s on Google docs so I can share it with the whole team. I’m sure I was a stage manager in another life.
Then spent the afternoon rehearsing with Sam & Tim West for this rehearsed reading from the First Folio. I was more nervous than I’ve ever been about anything. Ever. Who knows why? Maybe it was the possibility of my sneezing on an object worth more than a million pounds (I know!) Or maybe it was working with two of the best classical actors in the world. But I didn’t really have to direct them, obviously, because they’re amazing. Must remember that for next time – no need for nerves if you have the best acting and the best writing in the world.
Shakespeare is a legend. Even more than Rufus Norris.
Didn’t blog yesterday, that was remiss of me. No excuse, wasn’t even that busy – just had a few meetings and the usual email mountain. So belatedly (from the Q&A on Tuesday) can I just say for the record I fucking love Rufus Norris. He is amazing.
Today was good – started with an early morning meeting for STC – fund-raising fun. Hmmm, oxymoron? Then spent the morning with Loren (star of STC) advising her on how to set up her own theatre company (which she is currently doing Curious Eye Theatre – it will amazing, how could it not be, so watch this space…) Then we both saw Will‘s show at the Young Vic – an education production with 70 children with special needs performing in it, along with two professional actors (one also an aerialist, one also a musician – it was a bit like STC). Just the most amazing and beautiful work. Massive well done to the directors Abigail Graham & Rachel Bagshaw – can’t begin to imagine how much hard work it must have been, and so sensitively and beautifully handled.
Then had a meeting with Kate to continue the STC costume design process – which Loren tagged along with for the first part, then they classily went to take measurements in the toilets of the Young Vic while I had a quick text with Jeanette. Then back home for a phone meeting with Layla to discuss the progress of the aerial choreography for STC.
So all in all a very STC day, though also not, because we were meant to be having a read-through of the latest draft and dinner for the whole team at our place tonight which for various reasons fell through. But of course there’ll be other dinners, and certainly other read-throughs!
I’m on a bit of a drive to meet brilliant and inspiring women at the moment, pioneers in their field. That sort of thing. So this afternoon I’m off to meet Libby Purves and then catch up with my friend Amber (equally as brilliant and inspiring, if a little less famous) who works for Mobius… ooh… phone call…on the subject of brilliant women – just got off the phone from Juliet Stevenson. Amazing. Must work with her again soon.
Then in the evening going to a Q&A at the Young Vic with Rufus Norris – he’s not a woman, but he is brilliant and inspiring so I’ll make an exception just this once.
A rather relaxed day (after a weekend spent entirely on the sofa, being ill). Spent the morning with Kat Heath looking at the Flower man costumes for the tour – now that it’s spring their outfits have to adapt to the weather.
Then off to a regional theatre in a secret location to give notes on a tour of a show that has been abandoned by its director. Furtive…
I am ill. Still a good day. Had a wonderful meeting with Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama about directing something there. hope that works out. Then spent the afternoon rehearsing with the supermodel, who, it turns out is a rather brilliant actress, which is nice. Then an early dinner with Colin Blumenau, from Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, before we both saw the penultimate night of Gotcha. Now I must sleep and be not ill. Bleurgh…Will – bring me more toast!
In meetings at the Young Vic all day – also time for a sneaky lunch of chips with Will, who’s in tech here this week for his latest show.
Then off to hear Jess’s band/duo The Bluebirds this evening – can’t wait.