Sunday, October 2, 2011

Theater guest blog: blocking Our Town

Guest blog by Braxton Perry, cast member for PCYT's production of Our Town

Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2011
In our third week of Our Town classes and rehearsals, we went through something called blocking.
If you haven’t been in a play before, blocking is when the director gives out the directions of the play. Have you ever wondered how actors know where to walk, what door to open or where the door even is? That’s the magic of blocking. It tells us where to enter, where to walk to, what we do once we get there and where to exit. The director tells us all of this and we act it out on a mock stage. We write it in our script in pencil, which is very important since blocking can change.
We were in the TECO theater (where the performance will be; get some tickets!) with a few parts of the scenery on the stage. It’s the first time we’ve acted out the parts on an actual stage, so it presented some interesting challenges. Since the actor that played George (which is one of the main characters in the play) wasn’t there the first night of acting, Kerry Glamsch (the director) asked me to fill in for him. It was fun stepping into a role I hadn’t practiced, especially since I knew I could just have fun and not worry too much about having to be the character later on. I also got a chance to play my part of Professor Willard. I originally had planned to play him as a straight-on professor, but I’m going to play with making him a bit quizzical.
The next few days we worked on blocking Act 1. One day, it was really… fascinating seeing one of the first interactions between George and Emily (which are the love interests in Our Town). It was funny because the scene was written to be awkward, and since it was the first time they had really acted together, it was sort of doubly awkward. They got through it triumphantly in the end though, because they’re both great actors.
For the last few days we worked on the rest of Act 1. (Oh, did I mention that I’m also one of the choir members now as well? I actually have to sing two hymns live! Thankfully it’s not meant to be perfect, and it’s a choir, so I’ll be singing with around 12 other people.) On Monday I got to block out my other role, Constable Warren. I still haven’t completely decided on his personality, but I’m getting a better idea as we go along. We just finished blocking Act 1 on Monday, and tonight we’ll be starting to block on Act 2.
So that’s what happened the last few days. I’m learning a lot each class. If you want to get notified next time I post a blog, you can “like” Patel Conservatory on Facebook. Catch ya later!
[My] Teacher of the Week:
Ms. Melissa Stafford. She’s my ballet teacher, and she continually inspires me to achieve. She also makes teaching at my level feel like I’m working with the pros.
Things I like:
J'aime Français (I like French)
Pondering over intriguing gadgets (like a staple-less stapler)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for a cool take on what it's like in the OurTown Cast! It's like we're backstage, too!