Thursday, May 13, 2010

Last minute preparations

Today is the deadline for all things production - prop lists, program notes, etc. Since we present the Festival as a series of readings, production elements like scenery, costumes, and props are kept to a minimum. We find that this simplified way of producing a play really focuses attention to the story and characters that each playwright has created.

I'm directing the reading of Junior HS and Elementary school plays and need to do one last read of the scripts to finalize the small props and costume pieces that are necessary to the story. As a reading, the plays will be presented with the actors standing at music stands with scripts at the ready. This may sound easy with memorization and blocking not being major concerns; however, the performance relies heavily on the actors' interpretations. A few costume pieces or props (hats, glasses, wands, etc.) give just enough detail to further spark the audience's view of the story in their imagination.

The High School plays are done as staged readings, so there will be blocking and some technical elements in those presentations. Again, this is all very limited so that the playwrights' stories and the audience's imaginations have the focus.

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