Can I just say that the past month has FLOWN by? It does not seem like it has been an entire month since we first started working on this show. It is both terrifying and exciting that opening night is less than a month away - terrifying because there's so much work to be done, but exciting because the show does feel like it's coming together.
We have officially blocked the entire show. Next week we have two days of running each act, then we start doing full runs. I'm slightly (okay, more than slightly) nervous about putting this all together. It's probably mainly the Type A personality in me who wants the runs of the show to be as perfect as possible from my end. I missed the first time the cast ran through Act 1 (out of town) so I have this fear that we will get to running it and I will be super far behind! Going to spend a good portion of this weekend working on lines, perfecting harmonies, and reviewing blocking. I do believe that getting on my feet and running through all of this will help me get everything straight in my head. But I want to be as comfortable as I can be once we start doing runs.
The process has been really enjoyable for me thus far. Maybe it's because I love this cast and I love this show, so it would be hard to hate life when you're surrounded by cool people working on one of your favorite shows. But in all reality - this is probably one of the best, if not THE best, rehearsal experiences I've had so far. It hasn't been without some frustration (I will repeat - the music in this show is hard in places) but overall I feel like I've spent the majority of the time at rehearsals extremely happy.
Spoilers ahead if you don't know the show -
I've spent a lot of time recently thinking about the moment that pushes Martha to want to commit suicide. Mike and I were talking this last night - we have changed the blocking from the original to where now Martha hears Duke and JD talking about her at the pep rally. This certainly doesn't help her state of mind, but I think the inciting moment is when Veronica tells Martha that she is the one who forged Ram's love note that happens in the beginning of the show. As Mike said, people constantly are taking things from Martha. They take her dignity, her hope, her happiness... but they had never taken her best friend away, until that moment. Veronica and Martha's friendship started at a very early age ("Martha Dunnstock. My best friend since diapers"). Veronica has been her ride-or-die friend. Whenever Martha has a moment of self-doubt, Veronica is there to lift her back up. When Martha gets excited, Veronica hypes it up. When Martha is happy, Veronica will celebrate with her. When Martha needs a dose of reality, Veronica will more often than not give it to her - in a nice manner. Martha talks to Veronica about everything. Now, Veronica and Martha have already been drifting throughout the show, but I think Martha still sees Veronica as her best friend who would do anything for her, leading Martha to ask Veronica to help her get into JD's locker. Martha's social life has been pretty horrible, but she hangs on to the one hope and light in her life that Veronica will always be her friend. When she learns that her best friend has betrayed her, that light goes out - bringing her to her state of mind for Kindergarten Boyfriend. Without Veronica, Martha truly believes that she is in the world by herself. And if no one cares about her in this world, she wants to go to the next where maybe someone will.
That all sounds so depressing, but it's been on my mind a lot recently as we have worked on Act 2. Martha's got a tough life in many ways but I remain positive that she's got the biggest heart in the show and that if I went to Westerberg in 1989 she would be my first choice as a friend. I'm looking forward to getting this show off book and creating more relationships with the rest of the characters onstage. I can't wait to move forward to opening night with this show!