Been working on the story "Much Like..." and "Trolls" this week. "Much Like..." is very short so I have been able to finish it. I will leave it now until the next phase - the rehearsal/writing phase - where it will get polished and worked. So, with "Sleep Inc.", I've got two shorts complete now, and hopefully a couple more by the end of the week.
The way I work on monologues is fairly lengthy - though I have written some pieces very swiftly indeed. It isn't the writing of the monologue that takes the time, it's the re-writing and rehearsal phase that takes forever. Let's put it this way - at the moment I'm enjoying writing because the pieces are just coming out, fairly swiftly and without fuss. However, once I start saying the words outloud, then it get HARD. There are quite a number of agonies that I will have to go through trying to make a load of words work. Then I move to phase three, which is the rehearsal proper phase - preparing the stories for performance and fit them into a vaguely unified show.
"Trolls" is taking longer, partly because it is longer, and partly because it's just more complicated. It is about lots of things - themes, ideas, characters and emotions - whereas a short monologue tends to work on just one or two things. In the last week I've nearly completed a first draft - any day now and all the sections of the text will have been drawn together. The only problem is that the rewriting will now take forever.
But I need to get ahead, as the closer I get to summer the less time I will have each day - as other projects butt in and administration for the autumn rears its ugly head. Advertising, publicity, design work - plus the rehearsals themselves. No time for writing - or much rewriting - then.
Had a little meeting or two to confirm a few other shows I'll be directing in Suffolk between now and the Storyteller shows, as well as confirming a cast member for "The Ghosts of Lavenham" special in October. I can now start plotting out the story and look for details from Lavenham's past to create the character of the Ghost herself.
And, breaking news, there will be a one off, end of the line, performance of "Teaching Gods - The Ultimate Selection", in London in May. It'll be a farewell to some of my favourite stories for a while before I move onto the new set I'm writing now. It will also, by an amazing co-incidence, coincide with the launch of the Teaching Gods audiobook, which we're recording at the moment. In fact, my big task this coming week is to re-rehearse "Teaching Gods" to get it ready for recording, as a couple of slight adjustments may need to be made to carry the meaning in the audio format. Details on all this will follow shortly.
And finally - for anyone in the Portsmouth area, or with friends in the Portsmouth area, here is an appeal from a local theatre going through a really tough time. And with the world what it is at the moment, things are tough enough as it is. If you can support them, then do so...
Farewell, until next week...
Volunteers’ to Boost Theatre Recovery
Last Christmas a particularly unscrupulous individual made off with £6,000 in donations from Groundlings Theatre. It all seemed curtains for Portsmouth’s young, innovative, Arts Venue in the face of such a loss. But Groundlings are determined to show this city that it has got the guts to go on and that it will not be overcome by temporary adversity. But to leap this hurdle it’s going to take a little help from the community.
Groundlings offers the chance for anybody in the local (and outer) area to come and offer their services for a good cause. If you’re looking for the chance to boost your CV or just want to get some experience and make new friends, Groundlings gives you the opportunity to work in the wardrobe department, be an usher, work behind-the-scenes, make props, join the marketing department or perform any number of activities to support your local independent theatre.
The Fundraising Day will be at the Groundlings Theatre on Sunday the 6th of March from 12am til 5pm. It will give everyone the prospect of trying out something new. There will be performances by the Groundlings School Tap Class, a Stage Fighting Workshop lead by Star Wars actor Richard Stride, and a Guided Tour of the Grade two star listed Theatre as well as many other sponsored events including car washing, hide –and-seek and Face Painting!
Alternatively there will also be the opportunity to offer your services at the Volunteers’ Fair at the Portsmouth Guildhall on Thursday the 3rd of March.
For Richard Stride, Artistic Director at the theatre, ‘Groundlings represents both the past and the future of Portsmouth Culture. We are a platform for community arts to thrive and mature, for new and old talent, and voices of all ages to be heard and appreciated. With your help we can strengthen this platform and build higher and wider together’.
The show must go on!!
We'll have an entertaining day of
· Live Music
· Sponsored Events
· Bring and Buy Stalls
· Face Painting
· Theatre Tours
Sunday 6th of March 12-5pm
£3; £2 Concessions
Curzon Howe Rd
023 9273 7370