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Finally, the final R3 note

Well, and R3 has been closed for more than a month now, right? If I am going to do a post about it, I should just start typing, because otherwise it’ll all be a blur…

Things of which I am Proud of:

  • doing Shakespeare at all, frankly. This is my third in twenty years; I hope I get to do more. Any of my complaining about the production or the theater group should be put into the context of how pleased I am by a community theater that does Shakespeare every couple of years.
  • Chemistry with Richard. If Richard and Buckingham don’t have a kind of chemistry together, Act Three is going to really drag. I think we nailed that part of it—it’s always possible that two actors feel they are working well together and the audience doesn’t see it, of course, but you have to trust your instincts sometimes.
  • My death scene. If y’all are interested, I can write it up in detail, but in general, I think I managed to be just sympathetic enough to make the scene matter, without ruining the whole thing by making Buckingham into some sort of Righteous Wronged figure. Also, my Big Idea about the scene and the part (the notebook, and destroying it at the end) seemed to work, which was nice.

Things in which I am (somewhat) Disappointed in:

  • The houses, of course. We should have drawn more people. I don’t really understand that end of the business at all, but seriously: damn.
  • My costume. Our costume mistress kind of pooped out on us partway through rehearsals, and we wound up on our own, for the most part. Costume is really not-my-forte (despite my own fondness for dressing up), and I feel that Buckingham’s costume just didn’t really work. The punk costumes were great (Richard’s Act One leather jacket with the boar on the back was a highlight), and my inclination to dress against the punk thing may have been an error. Ah, well.
  • I,iii: the scene where Buckingham stands around for a long time in the background. It is hard on a fellow to start with a scene like that (or to only have scenes like that, which must be excruciating), but I don’t think I overcame it. Not that I think I was awful, but I don’t think I either prepared the audience for Buckingham’s important role in the middle of the play, or prepared the audience to be surprised by Buckingham’s important role in the middle of the play. Mostly, I just stood in the back and wiggled my eyebrows. Hm.
  • My lines. I did a good job but not a great job. I think I only really screwed up once, when I absolutely blanked and floundered for a couple of minutes before somehow getting back on track. On the other hand, I misspoke myself slightly every night in one or another place, got a couple of words consistently wrong, and in general satisfied myself with speaking mostly Shakespeare. Not good.

Other Things:

  • I met some very nice people who I enjoyed spending time with. It doesn’t look like any of them are going to wind up close friends, alas, but Facebook means never having to say goodbye.
  • Within thirteen months I had been in three shows with three different theater groups. The three have each had their own problems as companies. The one that seemed to consistently sell tickets is now defunct and bankrupt, but the people in charge will open a new place soon. The one that owns a humongous house that seats two hundred and fifty is happy to sell fifty seats, and had in the past year a significant changeover of the board, with quite a bit of bad feeling, and is struggling to put on three shows a year. The one that does six shows a year plus showcases, with very few dark weekends, is organizationally a mess, priding itself on its post-hippie leftover structure that leaves nobody responsible for anything. I really really really don’t want to get involved in community theater politics, and it looks like if I want to do community theater in this neighborhood, I will have to either get involved, or keep doing one show with each company.
  • I am due for a break from theater for a few months, possibly until the new year. I enjoy it, but it takes up a whole lot of evenings. And after a month, I am not missing it yet.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,

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