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Last night, the boyfriend and I went to an improvisational theatre performance.

For the first half, we listened to Jane Austen, Jackie Collins, HP Lovecraft, and... some other guy... as they told each other stories. (Yes, this was more exciting than it sounds.)

Jane Austen's tale involved Fanny Smithson and Harold Jones falling in love over mathematics and telescopes, while Lovecraft told a very creepy tale involving four masks - and only managed to get to three of them before the performance ran out of time, thus handily giving me nightmares about what the fourth mask would do.

Then, for the second half, we watched a court case.

They asked for suggestions from the audience of random objects that could be submitted into evidence. We suggested a rubber mallet - and they promptly decided that the defendant was a clown who had killed her fellow clown by substituting a metal mallet for the standard rubber mallet, thus causing a weight imbalance that made the clown fall to her death during the high-wire unicycle act.

So we listened to lots of circusy witnesses, telling us exciting tales of clown love, affairs with the ringmaster, the props master being seduced by the bearded lady, and malicious rubber mallet substitutions by all sorts of people.

It was wonderful fun.
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Started dress rehearsals this evening. Two more nights of that, and then we're performing.

If I seem absent, or just dead tired, this week... that's why.
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Had rehearsals last night.

The scene I'm in is one long party sequence. And yes, I have many lines, but I have even more time standing around in the background murmuring to people in vague having-a-conversation tones.

After a while, you run out of stuff to say to each other. Some people have been just saying what they're saying ("Pretty dress, pretty dress." "Ooh! Admire, admire, show off my dress." "Admire."), which is hilarious to listen to.
And last night my conversation partner and I got sick of that, and started reciting nursery rhymes to each other. There's something extremely entertaining about saying "Incy-wincy spider climbed up the waterspout" in very serious tones, while fluttering a fan and trying to look beautiful...


Feb. 3rd, 2010 08:50 pm
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Had some fancy china delivered yesterday - in a box that could have fit ten times as much china in it, but instead (to prevent breakages) was filled mostly with shredded paper. In fact, there was so much shredded paper in it that it took me over ten minutes to find the china...

We've been having rehearsals in a theatre with lots of chalk outlines painted on the floor (are they still chalk outlines if they're painted?). It's kinda freaky trying to rehearse while avoiding imaginary dead bodies.

I'm making caramel slice again! Woo! *feels very domestic*

Plants vs Zombies is a fantastic computer game, and far too addictive. (And I'm doing very well at it.)
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Last night I had the most useless rehearsal in my entire history of acting.

We went through the lines, discussing the motive and direction of each line.
Then we all sat in a circle and discussed our characters, and what their history and childhood is like, and how they feel about life, and what colour best describes them.
And then we walked around the stage, clomping our feet, then floating lightly and gliding along, then moving suddenly, and moving gradually, moving aimlessly, moving in straight lines, moving with motivation, moving without reason, trying to truly capture our characters...

It's Oscar Wilde. My character is a socialite who spends her life going to parties and not listening to what anyone's saying. She's shallow. And it's Oscar Wilde. She doesn't have any deeper motivation. That's kinda the point.

I'm aware that I'm being impatient, but really, trying to wring deep inner emotion out of characters in an Oscar Wilde play strikes me as fairly silly.
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Two days ago, someone asked me if I was still doing "the acting thing". And I said no, I wasn't, I didn't really have time.

...I am now in a play.

This is all because someone from my school emailed me and said they needed someone for a six-line part, and could I possibly show up for performances, do my six lines, and then go home?

Sure. Not that complicated.

And then I got to the rehearsal this afternoon and found out that someone has dropped out, and I have been promoted from my six-line part to a character who has seven lines on the first page and for all I know might have another hundred or so in the following scenes...

Yep. I'm in a play. Again. :)
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I've spent another weekend almost entirely without internet.
This was not a good thing.

On the other hand, I was very busy, so at least I had plenty of non-internet-related things to do...

my weekend )
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Some day soon, the Social Norms Police are going to break down my door, arrest me for "violating accepted standards of conversation with strangers, and profiting from said violation", and cart me off to the funny farm.

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A selection of photos from No Love Lost.
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Well, we've finally finished! I can't quite believe it, yet, but we've actually done all 25 performances. Our final show was last night.

I've been fairly quiet about what's actually been going on with No Love Lost for the last couple of months, mostly because I didn't want to bore you all. So I figured I'd put it all into one post, and then move on to other stuff.

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You know, I love Melbourne weather.
...most of the time.

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 Second dress-rehearsal last night. And our first time with an audience. You see, the front-of-house people get a free showing at our second DR, and then tickets for the third DR go to charity. So from now on, if I stuff up, there are people watching.

And last night? I stuffed up.

Oops. )
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Rehearsal tonight. Final one before our three dress rehearsals. And I finally got my lines to work in the final scene!

I've been having so much trouble with the blasted thing - every other scene was working perfectly, and as soon as we hit the final scene, my dialogue was awkward and stupid and completely out of character.
Then, tonight, I was running through it with Michael (pseudo boyfriend) beforehand, and he suggested, "why don't you put a pause in the middle of that line?"


And in the vast majority of lines I have, I do pause in the middle. It's very Anna-ish. But for some reason it hadn't occurred to me to pause in this last set of lines. And the moment I did, the whole thing just worked! Perfectly! It was like a miracle!

One week to go, now. And as long as I can remember my ridiculously complicated list of women from the newspaper (some lines - don't ask), I'll be fine.
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One Cat.
Free To A Good Home.
Preferably In China.
(Or in some other place a long way from here where he'd run the risk of being eaten. Suggestions, anyone?)

I had gone, very carefully, through my wardrobe, and found enough teenage-girl-ish outfits to come up with six different costumes for No Love Lost. And I put them, very carefully, in a bag by the door, ready to take to tomorrow night's rehearsal.

And my bloody cat went and peed all over them.

Do you know how horribly cat urine stinks?
Not only did he pee right through my costume bag, he hit the carpet underneath. The carpet that I had had professionally cleaned a couple of weeks ago - after the Hole In My Ceiling debacle.



Feb. 21st, 2008 08:17 am
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Quicksilver is being repaired, so I'm going to spend the week carless. Thankfully, I live very close to public transport.

I rewatched the Battlestar Galactica movie last night. I've been holding off on buying season 3 until I've finished watching all the other dvds I already own, but I'm not sure how much longer I'll be able to wait. This show is so awesome!
(What other dvds, you ask? Currently, I am halfway through Farscape season 3, My Name Is Earl season 1, Animated Spiderman season 1, My Family season 2, The Muppet Show season 2, Lois and Clark season 4, Mad About You season 1, Robot Chicken season 1, and The X-Files season 1. And instead of catching up with them, I've been rewatching NCIS...)

After spending most of my life trying to make myself talk quieter, I now have a director informing me that I'm way too quiet and need to talk louder!

Matchbox 20 is a very fun band.

I'm rapidly running out of space for icons. This is worrying, and may lead to an account upgrade...
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...especially in the amateur theatre.

Wendy (the director) had to spend fifteen minutes at last night's rehearsal trying to teach me how to STAND STILL. Seriously! My entire stage direction for one page of lines was "stand still, and look at the audience". And I just couldn't do it - my body rebels against anything which doesn't allow me to fidget.

At one point I ended up walking three metres across the stage, and every other part of the rehearsal stopped while the entire cast and crew tried once again to explain to me the concept of "staying where you are"...
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Play rehearsal last night.

Unfortunately, I am very good at learning lines. Not just mine - everyone's. And unfortunately, I am extremely bad at monitoring the stuff I'm saying, or stopping it from coming out of my mouth.

So, when someone on stage hesitates, I call out their next line. It's not even a conscious action on my part - it's just instinctive.
But I'm not supposed to be talking at all while people are rehearsing scenes. I'm certainly not supposed to be prompting them!
It's just so hard not to...
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I  spent the Australia Day weekend down at Philip Island with my family. (Well, not quite all of them. Dad was in Canberra shooting.)

My nephews are just wonderful! We read stories, made sandcastles, learned how to say "radio" (well, Alex did), and practised walking (Caleb).
I think I could happily spend ten years in a room with the two of them, and I'd never get bored (hungry, maybe...).

In other Philip Islandyness, I read through Harry Potter #7 again, played Kill Doctor Lucky, and bought a doll as a future investment for when someone I know has a daughter of the appropriate age.


Very glad I got comprehensive insurance for my car - I reversed into someone, coming out of my driveway. It was about the most minor accident that could still be called an accident, but I still have to pay excess.


Play rehearsals resumed last Thursday, and are three times a week from now on. I'm frantically trying to learn my lines, with some success...
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My sister's cat is staying with me this weekend, while my sister is at a wedding. His name is Max, which just happens to be the name of my father in No Love Lost.
So, I was learning my lines, loudly, and when I got to the part where I yell "Max!" in a very angry voice, my sister's extremely skittish cat freaked out and ran to the other side of the house.
Serves him right for taking chunks out of Elf's fur this morning.

I saw a book yesterday called Hello Cruel World: 101 alternatives to suicide. I wasn't sure whether to be very amused or slightly disturbed...


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October 2010



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