Wednesday, 24 October 2007


Just did a count of my panto lines so far. I have 79, and we still haven't got the final scene! I've more than broken my line count record. If I could get 21 or more lines in the final scene (quite possible, actually) I'd have over 100!

Anyway, last night's rehearsal rocked so much. To begin with, we all got two more scenes for our script, so that was really exciting to read. I feel so sorry for Ali now. I have a real bond with him, and he's really upset in the next two scenes, which makes me really upset! God, I'm so sad.

New favourite line:

'Well, Alkazar found our secret hiding place and then I dropped the orb and now he's going to kill me and I didn't know where else to go...'

While at the same time collapsing on the floor and blubbering away to the princess. I love dramatic stuff like that. And the princess' response to that?

'Well, I'm glad you came here. I can protect you. We can hide in my bedroom.'

Ah, good stuff in that script.

We were told last week we had to learn the lines for scene six (the lovey-dovey scene in which Ali falls madly in love with the princess and vice-versa), so they were all over my walls in preparation for last night. Anyway, I learnt them so we could do it without the scripts, which was a little bit nervewracking. Me and my princess had a chance to practice with each other in another room while everyone else was rehearsing the first scene (Ali and Sapphire have only just been born in that scene, and already they're arranging our marriage!) What we didn't know was that once we were up on stage that the director was going to turn all of the hall lights off and just leave the stage lights on, so it was like a proper performance! It was like opening night. The adrenalin was pumping, I was beginning to wonder why in God's name I decided to be in panto and so on. The audience are shrouded in darkness. You can see people watching you but you can't see them well enough to know who it is. etc etc. But it was fantastic. I got that buzz I normally get, and there was so much energy. Plus, the jokes get a much better reaction. We made all of the cast members laugh at our jokes, even though they've heard them enough times before. Being without a script on stage is so liberating! The panto is going so well this year with our new director. Normally this time of year we wouldn't even have had our parts yet, and now here we are doing scenes perfectly with loads of energy and without scripts. In previous years, that doesn't normally happen until Christmas is long past, and now it's only October! I think the audience are in for a treat this year.

And then we did the song, and I normally hate singing, but we had good fun doing it. My voice wasn't actually that bad, since I was feeling more confident after scene six. If I can find the courage to do it every night on performance week like I did it last night I think I won't have too much to worry about. My singing voice isn't great, but I think it was at its best last night, and that made me happy.

This week we're learning scenes 2 and 3, which although is two scenes as opposed to the one last week, they're shorter, so they still add up to roughly the same amount of lines to learn. I like the way they're doing it this year. Rather than just getting to Christmas and telling everyone after the break they aren't allowed any scripts on stage and so have to learn the whole thing over Christmas, this time they're doing one or two scenes a week, which is good. Learning the lines isn't too much trouble, but it takes some effort and balancing to learn the new lines without forgetting all of the lines learnt in previous weeks. All of the lines for the scenes so far are on my wall, but the ones I need to learn for the next week get the most prestigious spots (the bathroom wall, my bedroom wall next to the light switch and my computer wallpaper), since that's what I look at the most often. Meanwhile, lines from previous weeks are beginning to fill the space on my bedroom door. I'm not putting up lines from scenes we don't need to learn yet, or I'll just confuse myself. Don't want too much of an information overload.

There's murmur of tickets being on sale before Christmas this year - I'll let everyone know when that happens.

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