Next to Normal – MTC – Day 21

I don’t know if was the Tim Tams at break, or the three coffees, but something smoothed this day out and everything worked today.  Not the automated platforms, but I don’t consider them part of my experience yet.  We started with a vaguely intense choreography session, working “I’m Alive” and “Wish I Were Here”.  Andy did remarkable work on both songs.  He worked Gareth and Kate’s physicality brilliantly to tie them in through the whole song.  Our challenge has been to connect the two, and figure out what that songs means in relation to Diana’s treatment at that point – basically, how to theatricalise the block that Gabe represents in Diana’s getting better.  But today it all came together and felt wonderful.  So we moved onto dancing the ECT – we were already going strong on this, but really worked the scene where Diana and Natalie connect in the hallucination, as well as the addition of Henry to Diana’s experience.  This won’t make any sense till you see it.  To finish Andy cleaned the waltz and did a really touching job.  It looks lovely and is completely moving.

We picked up with “Song of Forgetting” and nuanced exactly where Dan, Diana and Natalie are at this point.  Flicked through all the Natalie/Henry scenes of Act 2 – Ben and Christy are doing such good, truthful, romantic work and I couldn’t be happier with them.  “Better than Before” got a great workout, especially with Matt’s jolly energy.  We stop quite a lot for hilarity respites.  One that can’t really be described here but basically involved tight blocking and an inappropriate father/daughter connection.

Gareth is totally in tune with Gabe’s strength and focus in the show and brought some lovely new stuff to “Aftershocks”.  Then we got onto the tough section, commencing with “How Could I Ever Forget”.  It’s just hard.  It’s simple, it’s gutting.  It’s the core of the show.  But once we’d worked it again, we flowed easily into the next ten minutes.  Though we do struggle with the dropping of the music box.  Ah, props.

Checked in with Michael Griffiths to see how the launch of our new Madonna show went for the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.  A triumph, apparently.  Then home to email a few articles and catch up on emails.


Published by bryantandfrank

Dean Bryant and Mathew Frank make musicals. And other things.

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