A young(ish) opera singer's random thoughts and observations.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Saying goodbye to Glasgow

As I write this, my stint at Scottish Opera has drawn to a close... Or perhaps I should say that the rehearsal period has, as I will still be on standby for another couple of months (the girls even reckon we should have suitcases packed and ready just in case). It has been an eventful couple of days, and I know that some people would like to find out how the incident I last described developed, so here we go!

Thursday, September 8th

We have rehearsals in the morning, and these have been moved from Elmbank Crescent (SO headquarters) to the Citizen's Theatre, to give us more time to work on the set (hugely helpful, and probably inspired by last night's accident, which thankfully didn't have any drastic consequences, so I now feel better about touching on it here). We are told that Nick, the principal Orpheus is fine, and that he will be going on, though Adrian will have to take over gimp-anzee duties (apparently after the risk-assessment Nick will be treated as visually impaired for a week or so, after being hit in the eye with a bottle).

Opening night goes well. Nick's eye looks slightly frightening, but gets worked into the dialogue very well, and he gives a great performance, so obviously it looks worse than it is. The audience react well, though some gasps of shock can be heard every now and then, which is probably what the director was going for, and laughter dominates throughout anyway, so no harm done in challenging the audience. It's all far too silly to be taken as offensive anyway (at least by a Glaswegian audience).

At the company reception after the show we have a chance to chat to the cast a bit, which is nice. Nick is in very good spirits, especially when recounting his recent taxi ride:
Driver: So what happened to you then?
Nick: I got stabbed in the eye in the Gorbals. (the area of Glasgow where the Citz theatre is located, a fairly rough neighborhood)
Driver: Ah well, I've picked up worse...

Friday, September 9th sees us running the show for the first time in its entirety. We do a messy job, but it's secure enough that it never gets close to derailing, so although there's thought to be put in before tomorrow's covers' run, we all know where we went wrong and how to fix it.

Saturday, September 10th

Our last day, the covers' run (cue ominous music or fanfare as you see fit). We all convene at the theatre quite early to warm up, focus, walk the set, etc. It might seem being a bit precious, but it's our only full run on the set with props and elements of costume, plus management will be in the audience.

Although, on that last point, Derek Clark said something reassuring yesterday. The covers' run is not an audition, he as head of music has seen us working, other key people auditioned us and we already got the job. Treat it as a rehearsal, focus on the technical stage elements, as it'll be our last chance to go over them in relative calm.

The run goes pretty smoothly, I must say, and it's a huge relief, to be honest. I now feel that if I was to go on, I wouldn't be a risk or extreme hinderance to the cast! A quick lunch, one last notes session, and... That's it! We're ready to step in if need be. It's been intense, fast and furious, but we did it. It was an incredible team effort, and one couldn't ask for a better team than the people I had the pleasure of working with here. Thank you all!

It's not over though, I've got to find a workable way to keep all the staging in good shape until December, including the dances... And there are arias I want to learn, a Mahler song cycle to prepare, and college is starting in a week! Bring on the fun!

The cover cast, minus Adrian (gimping) and Laura (taking the photo)

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