The first Preview finally comes.
What I like to call The 300 Person Director comes into our house, peers into the Faberge egg of our combined efforts and breathes on our house of cards. Their presence galvanizes us. 600 eyeballs scutinize our baby.
The actors split into two: The character they are playing and the actor himself listening, feeling for the tiniest signals from the audience that will be a barometer of the effectiveness of the performance.
A titter here, a knowing harumph there, nothing is missed. For the clowns its easier: where are the laughs. For the more dramatic roles a kind of sixth sense is employed. Are they with me? Did that line land the way it should? Am I getting in the way of the story? The 300 Person Director is helping to shape the show.
The curtain comes down and we have some beers in the dressing room. We got through it. Nobody died. We got some great responses from a very lively house. Some things need to be changed before tomorrow's show. Some things worked, others fell flat. The 300 Person Director made certain things painfully obvious. But spirits are high. We have a show.
But no one will sleep tonight.
Too much to think about.
Too much to play and replay in our heads.
Too much adrenaline has just coursed through our viens and our brains.
Luckily, we've got 4 more previews and you, dear reader, will be out there, letting us know when we succeed and when we fail to bring this monster to life.
You are our 300 Person Director.
And I thank you.
Next: OPENING NIGHT