Yesterday was a long day. We had our tech rehearsal (sort of) on Friday night. Our lighting designer was supposed to come out to Dublin that night to get all of our lighting sorted, but called at 10 to let me know that she couldn't make it after all. Hmm. So we did the best we could, and I don't think it was half-bad, considering that I'd never used that sort of light board before. Luckily, with all of the stage managing I've done, I'm not totally unfamiliar with lighting.
After we finished with that (very late!), the cast and I piled into David's car and headed out for our cast sleep-over. It was a long ride, and we were all very tired - and that resulted in some very interesting conversation on the way. I won't go into all the details, but let's just say that we drove through clouds and now all have CareBear names.
Saturday morning came far too early, and I baked two cakes for the show. I've got to say, I love a show where the actors constantly eat and drink. I think I'm going to make actors eat and drink in every show I can. The dress rehearsal wasn't bad... but it started REALLY late, and my stress level was through the roof by the time it was time to get ready for the first show. The house staff didn't bother showing up on time, and I had to take tickets and money and deal with things that I didn't have any idea about, which was frustrating. But hey, it happens sometimes.
By the time the evening show rolled around, I was feeling better. Tired, but better. And the evening show felt GREAT! The cast knew what they were doing, and even though they wandered off from the script a few times, they brought it all back and I don't think the audience noticed at all.
My favourite part? Getting the actors drunk. See, in "Dinner with Friends," everyone is eating and drinking. Of the seven scenes, the actors are drinking wine in four. By intermission, a couple of them were looking, well, a little flushed :) Of course, they're both light-weights ;) But it definitely kept them from stressing as much as I was afraid that they would. Like I said, I'm going to try to have my actors drinking in as many shows as I can! (Caveat: It depends on the actors, of course. I trusted this group to stay professional, because I've seen them all drink before.)
So my first directorial experience was a good one, if stressful. I've learned a lot of things. The most important? Twenty-four days from read-through to opening is enough time to manage, but not enough time if you want to do things like eat and sleep! But I loved it, and I can't wait to do it again!
Chris, Colby, David, and Lizzie - you were AWESOME! I'm so proud of all four of you, and I had a blast working with you, even with all of the headaches and insanity of the last three weeks. I couldn't have asked for a better cast. I love you guys!