It was so great to get back into the studio after a little spring break! Week 5 officially marked our halfway point, so there was just one more piece of the story to learn – the very end!
Our team was excited to get back into dance party and warm ups (including singing "Happy Birthday" to Jack, Anna, and Jenna and a new tongue twister for our Monday group inspired by Emily L: "red leather, yellow leather, BLACK PANTHER."). We took a contemplative tone for Check In. In the final act of Cyrano, we learn that the devoted lover Roxanne has carried Christian's final letter next to hear heart for 14 years. We asked our ensemble: What is the most special gift you have received and who gave it to you?
- Alena: My mom is the most special gift of my life. She is precious to me.
- Jack: My Dad’s mom gave me a diamond that belonged to my pop-pop
- Lucas: Tickets to visit Poland.
- Lucy: when my dog passed away, my mom made me a necklace with a jewel that has her ashes so Lily is always by my heart
- Marissa: My boyfriend wrote me a special letter
- Mila: My kitten! She is black and grey and I love her!
- Natalia: My iphone because my parents trusted me to be responsible
- Quincy: My mom took me to see Hairspray
- Samuel: Cooking a special dinner
- Sam P: Movies!
- Anna: My Cubs sweatshirt
- Ben: Seeing High School Musical!
- Colleen: My boyfriend brought me a letter and a white rose
- Emily K: iPad from my mom
- Emily L: Going to the movies
- Emma: My aunt brought me a t-shirt from Las Vegas. I want to go there!
- Peter: My name was on the scoreboard at a Cubs game
- Sam R: My girlfriend asked me to prom
If you’ve been following us from before the break, you know that we’ve focused the first several weeks of class on learning about the characters in our adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac and exploring their character traits and motivations. Each week we’ve focused on a different act of the story, watching it unfold moment by moment through play plots and other activities. We played some review games this week, including Here to There focusing on our characters' personality traits, and a tableau game making still pictures of the key moments of the story so far. You can see some of our favorite moments from these games in this gallery:
Then it was time to do our Play Plots for acts 4 and 5. Before we started our play plots, our ensemble took bets about whether we were in for a happy ending or a sad ending. Spoiler alert: not everyone makes it out of Cyrano de Bergerac alive. We had some thoughtful conversations about this ending before checking out and finishing up for the night. Our closing blessing also provided an exciting moment this week! At each rehearsal a different actor serves as our schedule keeper, helping us mark the transitions from one exercise to the next and leading us in our call and response blessing "I Take from the Heavens." We were so excited that Peter led us for the first time this week with a little help from Lawrence. Check out this great video:
In addition to our regular rehearsals, this weekend we also took a trip to Theatre Wit. Chicago company, BoHo Theatre is also doing a new adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac, and some of our ensemble members and their families got a chance to see this lovely production on Sunday and participate in a talkback with the cast. This was a wonderful opportunity to see the characters come to life and help get a better understanding of the story, and to get advice from professional actors ranging from character motivations to handling stage fright. This intimate, heartfelt production will close on Sunday April 15th. If you have a chance to go support our local theatre community, please do!