Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Noah

Life after Noah

So Noah of Cape Town opened on Saturday night and so did the heavens, bucketing down and causing flash flooding and chaos in our city. A big, if dangerous, release I think.

I also need to release. Noah has been all consuming for me this year, and while I am totally proud, awestruck, dedicated and still determined that it have a long life, I need to get stuck in to a few other things that need my attention.

The first of these is TheatreSports, one of my first and oldest loves, which has been ticking over nicely in the background and now needs to fly. I want to find a long term sponsor for TheatreSports. TheatreSports needs to be played and learned at every school and every schools festival. We need full houses at our weekly performances and more shows during the school holidays. We need money for a proper marketing campaign if we do next year’s long and ambitious Grahamstown festival. We need to put our plans of hosting a TheatreSports world cup into action.

Then there is The Tent, the play I wrote which showcased at Artscape’s New Writing Programme last year, and has been given a full run this year. I am really blessed that this new work of mine is being supported by this programme and allowed to grow and develop. We go into rehearsals in October and have a two week run in November. I am so excited to get my teeth into that one again.

Up next though is another of my industrial theatre projects. For the last five years I have been working with a client, creating half hour plays that perform as part of a National road show, and this year there are two different plays. We did the first one quite recently in May and June and the next one starts rehearsing at the end of August. Although it’s challenging to come up with new and fresh ideas on a similar theme and concept, I love the characters that we have created and I love the team of actors that have become their own little family.

So there is lots to look forward to and I need to get very busy.

But before that I must remind you to go and check out Noah of Cape Town. Now. You might want to see it more than once.

What a Week

It’s been a crazy week, and I don’t have that comforting feeling that it’s the weekend and I can kick back and relax. I think it is pretty much going to get more hectic, right up until I leave for Grahamstown. No, it will be hectic then too. Ok, until I get back from G’town. No, that will bring me straight into pre-opening of Noah. Sheesh. Buckle up.

This week has been full of putting out Noah fires. Yes, even in the coldest, wettest weather. On Monday the Noah set arrived in our old venue (The Curved Space in Woodstock) and it was too big to be worked on. Simon found a new space and we moved the monster set and all the sound to Wet Pups (Western Province Preparatory School) where we are using the hall. Luckily it’s school holidays. We also realised that we needed a stage manager. Don’t ask. Well, we got one. It’s been stressful.

But yesterday afternoon we watched a run through. On the set, with the cast of magnificents. Three young ladies from the Department of Environmental Affairs and Development Planning came to watch the rehearsal and it was a delight to chat to them, hear their passion, and see how they were inspired by the work.

Our poster and programme are going to print next week. They are stunning. The show looks and sounds amazing. I can’t wait for the actual thing. I can’t wait.

meetingkommandant

It really is starting, and man, oh, man

I am beyond exhausted, energy sapped, and jangling. I was at the Kalk Bay Theatre from 9 this morning and I got home literally ten minutes ago, after being there all day and night (it’s Tuesday and we play TheatreSports there on a Tuesday night). Today fab director of Noah, Jaci de Villiers, musical man and writer Graham Weir and MD Amanda Tiffin ran the Cape Town call backs for Noah, our original accapella musical. And it was kick-ass, massive and brilliant. All (nearly all) those actors I had complained about? Well, these weren’t them. I loved these call back guys. They were fantastic, focused, disciplined, humble, prepared, talented and dynamic. They worked in groups and on their own. They brought amazing energy and skill to the process. They listened, they gave, they responded. I sat and heard our dialogue be brought to life and become meaningful. I got very, very excited. I fell in love with about seventeen people. I saw the possibility.

Well done and thank you to all who gave their time, energy and, mostly, commitment to this gruelling process. Choosing a cast is going to be so hard and I am so glad that it’s not my job.

I also learn so much from this whole experience. I keep learning about music and singing, which is amazing. I can’t believe how hard it is to be both a brilliant singer and a brilliant actor. I am learning audition techniques. I am learning about performers and how they think and feel. I am learning how to be generous and warm to people who are nervous and anxious. I am learning how to read between the nerves. I am learning to be surprised by people. I am learning to let them change my mind, and heart.

Jozi artists rock

I did that ridiculous one day Jozi thing. I flew up at the crack yesterday and then came back today, so I could be at Jozi call backs for Noah. Jaci de Villiers (fab director) organised for some of her favourite Jozi talent to come and meet Graham Weir (the writer, composer and voice guru) Amanda Tiffin (musical director) and me. I want to tell you; a whole new ball game. These guys were prepared. They were professional. They were keen. They looked good. They were organised. Most of them were even early. I was blown away by the talent. I was charmed and warmed and excited. Slaap Stad, we’ve got a lot to learn. Agents here in Slaap Stad, you are going to have to up your game. This is an amazing opportunity to be in a brand new, original, local, accapella musical. How is it possible that people don’t pitch, come late, are unprepared, can’t make call backs, don’t want to be in long runs? Slaap Stad actors, you are going to have to catch a wake up or else everything will have to be cast in Jozi. And I think that that is a huge pity.

What are They Thinking?

It’s 02h06am and I can’t sleep through the heat. Also, I keep getting really woes.

Yesterday was spent auditioning for Noah, which should be a fabulous opportunity to see who is out there and experience some of the amazing talent on offer, that is constantly talked about. Now the brilliant and amazing director Jaci de Villiers has been off the Cape Town circuit for about ten years; she has been living and making work in Jozi, and doesn’t know many of the CT players. This audition process should be the chance for her to get a sense of who is out there and what they can do. And before everyone gets their broekies in a twist, let me just say that this rant does NOT apply to everybody and that there were a couple of people who really did justice to themselves and what they have to offer.  But, please can somebody explain to me, firstly, why so many people on the list (that had been revamped and updated and changed a million times) just didn’t pitch? Hey? Then, please can somebody also tell me which part of “prepare a song and a monologue'” should be ignored? Surely, if you are doing an audition you should…do the preparation? Obviously nerves kick in and words are forgotten and things planned don’t pan out. We know that. We appreciate that. But don’t try and bullshit your way through an audition that you are not prepared for. Finally, don’t the agents know what the people on their books can do? I mean, if the guy, or lady guy can’t sing, at all, even a little bit, then maybe they shouldn’t really be at an audition for an accapella musical? And if they’ve never acted before, in their lives, or had any training at all, surely they shouldn’t be there, taking up a slot and mauling beyond recognition the teeny monologue that they’ve chosen to do. I am sorry. It is just so plain rude to all involved.

Today we have the day off, but tomorrow it’s another full day of auditions. I really hope there can be a more genuine response in my glassy eyed smile tomorrow.

The Start of Something truly Special

I am off today, with Jaci de Villiers, the most fabulous director of Noah, to help her and be around as she holds the very first round of auditions. This is too exciting. it has been years in the planning, wishing and dreaming, and finally it is real.  Watch this space.

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