Monday, July 13, 2009

Gibson: Notes from the Road ~ Williamstown, MA

Below is a post Mira wrote last week regarding her experience working on NICO with WTF:

Williamstown Theater Festival
Williamstown, MA

Being here at the WTF developing this new comedy with director Kate Pines has been one of the most exciting projects I have had as an emerging playwright. I met Kate back in April through another director we both know, and like a great first date the chemistry was there. We decided to move forward with the possibility of working together at WTF, based on my interest not to develop or improve a play I already had, but to write a brand new play. I really wanted to write a play based on a side character named Nico that appears in another play of mine. However, as I drafted and redrafted NICO throughout the month of May, I found that the Nico in NICO was becoming a brand new Nico, a Nico to rival all Nico’s. A Nico to be remembered. I arrived here at Williams College last Sunday, and over the course of the past week the play has evolved to such heights of hilarity that, as one of my actors put it while laughing through the script, “stop stop, I’m gonna throw up”. We are having way too much fun. The process that Kate and I have honed in on and have been rolling with, is that we have rehearsal in the evening, then she and I meet briefly after to discuss what’s going on in the script and areas that I want to or should take a look at for revisions or rewrites. The next day, I have all day to address whatever we discussed and agreed on, and in the late afternoon I email Kate the new pages which we then see and hear that evening in rehearsal. It’s a totally incredible developmental process that is at times very scary and at times incredibly rewarding. Last night I had one of the most rewarding moments here. While Kate was trying to block a fight scene with a lot of movement, one of the actors suggested, “If I leap onto this storage bin I can jump into Nico’s arms as I try to strangle Nicole from across the table”. It was exactly what the scene needed. I’ve been here a week and we’ve basically locked in the script, which is very exciting and we both really worked to get to where we are in the script now. I will be here for a few more rehearsals and then Kate and the cast will rehearse rehearse rehearse until the performance on July 22nd.

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