If you get to see the next edition of OK! Magazine turn to the section containing photographs of celebrities arriving at the Private Viewing of the V&A’s Bowie Is exhibition and you find the shot of Noel Gallagher and partner. There heavily cropped out in the background may be my arm or Ana’s head.
So far The Anatomy of Melancholy has been going very well. Coming off stage after the performance the cast were buzzing with excitement about how much better it was to perform in front of real people and not just grumpy old me. The show is so presentational it feeds off its audience tremendously. The second performance included some small but significant tweaks that helped make it a good notch up on the opening night. The only real glitch has been that classic issue of over efficient cleaners confusing set and props for mess.
At last it is here, Theatre Fever, a fortnight in which we celebrate theatre made and performed in the West Midlands. There is always a lot happening on the region’s theatre scene but Theatre Fever has chosen to put the spotlight on this fortnight.
Gathered in its program is just a cross-section of the huge variety of theatre open to the public at any given time. For the most part it is a marketing exercise (our new show The Anatomy of Melancholy is part of our and Warwick Arts Centre’s contribution to the celebration), but there are also Holding Space commissions adding to the richness of possibilities open to audiences. To see everything that is highlighted as part of Theatre Fever visit this website. To see what elements we are hosting @ A E Harris visit this website. Read the rest of this entry »
‘Fresh’ from a month in Perth with Stan’s Cafe performing Of All The People In All The World Chris Dugrenier is shortly to be seen at Camden Peoples Theatre in London as part of their excellent Sprint Festival with her new solo show Elan Vital. The ideal thing to see if you are not at the ‘World Premiere’ of The Anatomy of Melancholy at Warwick Arts Centre or the ‘World Premiere’ of Talking Birds‘ new show We’re Only Here Today at mac birmingham (notice the feverish activity on the West Midlands theatre scene).
When people know you are in the latter stages of making a new show they often kindly ask “how’s it going?”. I was taught years ago by a wise person to always say “great!” or “brilliant!” because positivity breeds positivity and that helps you finish the show and flogs tickets. In truth it’s sometimes a bit difficult to tell. I’m quite happy with how The Anatomy of Melancholy is shaping up, but does that mean the audience will be happy? Am I so immersed in the world of Robert Burton that I’ve lost my perspective entirely? In one sense it is my job to keep that outside perspective but only in one sense.
Exodus Steps is ready to open. We have walked members of the Skirball Cultural Center staff around, sent them files for replacement vinyl if it is needed. We have sent various scripts for what the front of house team can say when people ask them what it is and how it works.
We worked hard, had good fun in the midst of the slog and treated ourselves to a brief trip to Venice Beach when it was all over. A webpage now exists for the show here and there is a run down of the process I wrote for Skirball’s blog here. Today attention turned fully onto The Anatomy of Melancholy.
So it’s the morning of the last day installing Exodus Steps. We have been working long, long hours as our ambition for the show has grown to match the scale of the Skirball Cultural Center’s campus. Read the rest of this entry »
Things are going ridiculously smoothly. Everyone has been very helpful and very friendly. The show fits into the space remarkably well. All our proposals have been accepted. We got a little close to the wire with delivery of vinyl, but that has arrived now. We got a little close to being at war with the venue’s plotting machine, but fortunately Gene was working late and stepped into the room at the crucial moment. It all makes for a stress free experience and a tedious blog entry. Maybe you’ll like this one more.
A donut the size of a house? Yes, we’re back in Los Angeles adn although the Paparazzi were at Arrivals it turns out they were more interested in models and film stars flying in for the Oscars than Stan’s Cafe turning up to stick vinyl all over the Skirball Cultual Center.
Our project is on the front of the venue’s season brochure, it has its own flier and banners promoting it hang from lampposts up Sepulveda Avenue, so the pressure is on to get this one right.
Finally we have a draft of a complete script for The Anatomy of Melancholy. It has taken a long time to assimilate the huge book and select the key elements that cannot be left out, there is always just one more ‘great bit’ fighting to get in. Read the rest of this entry »