By Annabelle Terry
Sunday 16th Jan 2022
“One foot in sea and one on shore, to one thing constant never” – Balthasar 2.3
We are in Indiana!
Due to the pandemic there have been many moments where it seemed like the odds were against us, but fuelled by pure determination and the ongoing support from the Notre Dame team, we have made it over. We were greeted with open arms and the welcome was both emotional and surreal – a real ‘pinch me’ moment that, despite everything, we were finally in sunny (but still -12) South Bend.
Today I’m a mixture of excitement, jet lag and relief. I should mention that it’s my first time ever visiting America so everything has massive novelty… fire hydrants, stop signs, Chipotle, friendly people – I like it here already. Earlier we took a walk around the Notre Dame campus which was simply amazing, and even more picturesque being covered in snow. The streets were quiet as we learned of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday tomorrow, so it gave us time to get acclimatised and walk off the tiredness.
I still can’t quite believe that just over 48 hours ago we were sat in the British countryside in a quaint little cottage kitchen and now we’re here!
As for the show – I am so proud of what we have achieved in only 12 days together the cottage. We realised that it was the first time since starting the job back in December that we had been altogether as a complete 5 piece. Despite the time and space limitations, we have blocked, learnt, choreographed and composed the whole show! Now comes the refining, detailing and sharpening in our American leg of rehearsals which start tomorrow through to opening night on the 26th. And this, for me, is the best part. It never ceases to amaze me how brilliant Shakespeare is at providing us with everything we need as actors – in this instance, we have the most potent, emotional, witty and playful text in “Much Ado”… all we have to do is deliver and receive it. Thanks, Will!
I’m also looking forward to working with the Notre Dame students and watching them discover this same innovation with Shakespeare’s work. Hopefully many of them come to see our “Much Ado” and enjoy its heart and just how human it feels, even hundreds of years since it was written.