Sunday 23rd January 2022
“If you swear, my lord, you shall not be forsworn.” – Leonato 1.1
Hello Notre Dame!
What a great first week it’s been in Indiana. We are finally in a proper rehearsal space again! I had almost forgotten what it was like to have space and the freedom to move around – it’s a far cry from the cottage kitchen back in England!
It’s also great to meet the Shakespeare at Notre Dame team properly in real life and have the brilliant Scott Jackson in our rehearsals. He’s been helping us figure out any sticking points with transitions and blocking within the show which has been so useful. And we got to celebrate his birthday with a fantastic meal out at a great local spot, Bantam. Everywhere we go everyone is so friendly and wants to support the show by booking tickets and spreading the word. I already feel like I’ll miss South Bend! There is a real sense of community from Notre Dame and I can see why people choose to study here.
The show is getting slicker and slicker now we have the room to start running transitions and sequences with space. Being just the 5 of us multi-roling all the different characters, clarity is key when swapping back and forth from one character to the next. For example, Katherine plays both Leonato and Hero (father and daughter) and flips back and forth between them with real distinction and commitment. It’s inspiring to watch and I cannot wait for our audiences to experience the many crafty moments like this within the show. Another example is Will who, in one scene, is playing 3 characters all on stage at the same time! No spoilers, but look out for it, it’s great…
Today was our first full day off in Indiana so some of us went for a drive and ended up walking around Potato Creek State Park. I know to locals this is probably a relatively small park, but to us it is HUGE! It was completely covered in snow and the lake had frozen over. People were even skiing their way around which I became increasingly jealous of – walking in thick snow is tiring! But beautiful nonetheless.
We seem to have finally shaken off the jet lag and tomorrow we move into the theatre space. Notre Dame’s facilities are amazing and the Washington Hall theatre is stunning. It’s felt like a long time coming and no doubt it’s going to be an emotional moment to have an audience watching us and being able to finally share this show that we have put so much into.