Here we are, the second week of "the new normal".
Another week of SCANDALOUS rehearsals and previews. A lot of changes planned for this week. So far, I'm really proud of our creative team. They have managed to cut over 15 minutes off the show, tightened its focus and its storytelling, and been very brave with the cuts. Last week we even cut a song, DEMON IN A DRESS, which was sung by two-time Tony winner George Hearn (he was so gracious about it - a fine example of professionalism. We all worship and adore him). But by the end of last week, we were all pretty worn out. The combination of an already nearly impossible schedule during previews, and then the stress of hurricane Sandy and its transportation challenges was a lot for even the hardiest of theatre folk!
So, we were all very much looking forward to a day off.
My day off consisted of: Trying to find gas (which we did - phew!); finding a grocery store that was open and that actually had some food (which we did - phew!); doing four loads of laundry, finding food and feeding all the cats we have (now that's a blog in itself); and trying to figure out how I was going to get in and out of the city all week long.
My husband, Ken Land, is in rehearsals for HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS, which will play the Wang Center in Boston and Madison Square Garden here in New York. He is called for rehearsal from 10 AM until 6 PM, so we decided to send him into the city last night so that he could try to get a good night's sleep and not have to face the morning commute. Most New Jersey transit commuters still have no train service, which has really crippled the whole area. There were some reports of as long as three hours to get in and out of the city, which included waiting 90 minutes to even get on a bus.
I started my day off today at 6:00 AM. I woke up and drove over to our local elementary school, where I voted. The school still had no power, so we voted in trailers set up in the parking lot which were run by generators. I got home by 7:30 AM to get everything ready to go, and began my walk down to the South Orange train station, where I waited in line for 40 minutes to get on a bus to come into New York City. I was the last person allowed on the bus so I had to stand. I did not get on the first try, but I did make it in... eventually.
I am determined to have a less stressful week, and plan to stay in town a couple of nights to try to ease up some of the commute time. Thank goodness for my generous friends!
At SCANDALOUS, the plan for the fifteen rehearsal hours that we have left is to do more tightening of the show with a few more cuts. I think they are cutting two different scenes today, one of which involves cutting a big set piece (Aimee's Gospel Car). Then, allowing the show to settle a little bit over the weekend before the critics start in next week before our opening on November 15.
I also tried on some understudy clothes. I understudy the role of Minnie, Aimee's mother. SCANDALOUS has had a couple of other incarnations under other titles (SAVING AIMEE, etc.), so I tried on a combination of clothes from other productions that they will alter to fit me. Fun!
As I finish typing this, I am sitting in the audience watching Roz Ryan and Edward Watts work out a new scene. Check out the picture below. That's normal, right? Doesn't every show have a scene with a big, paper mâché head of Goliath?
Come see SCANDALOUS!!!!
The line to get on the bus
Roz Ryan and Edward Watts