Last night the cast had a vocal clean up rehearsal. Keeping to my promise of working numbers out over the course of the week, I got there at 5:30. We went over Brass Band, not as many times as I wanted, but more than we have had the chance to do in a single rehearsal. On Tuesday, I had taken video of the run through and showed the cast how close they are to getting the dances down. I think they need to see for themselves that the steps are in their heads, they just have to stop over analyzing. The great thing about a Bob Fosse show is that he uses musical cues for so many of the steps that when creating something in this style you have the music to help guide you through. In most productions, I’m A Brass Band is done as a tap number (in the movie Fosse didn’t have them tap nor in the Broadway version), with huge chunks of music edited out for not only time, but for ease of creating a piece. The steps in my version are simple, but the fact that they are interchangeable create a barrier in the mind that you have a choice as to which step comes next. Luckily, we have muscle memory, and I emailed detailed notes to everyone after the dances are complete.
At 7:00, when Rachel, our music and vocal director came in, we switched gears and began singing. Listen to me say “we”. I didn’t sing. They sang, and they sound great. Rachel is concerned about the breath because after the dances, you can hear that they are low on air. However, I fully believe that since they didn’t sing while they rehearsed the dances, that is the cause of the problem. With practice, they will get it, and as we head in to “Hell Week” they are going to have plenty of time to practice this. I planned on heading home once Rachel got there, but she said that she wanted to fix a couple of things and have the people run the dances. I went home to grab a bite to eat and when back at 8:00 like she asked.
The cast ran through Rhythm of Life. Looks pretty good. I will make some small adjustments. SMALL.
Brass Band: Once they get the trumpets for the jazzy part the ladies can really put the hurt with that body swing and contraction step. Then the percussion will be a huge help for the section that it’s ONLY percussion that’s playing. Will change one step for the ladies. At the end, have to get that jete on 7-8.
Cry at Weddings: Just have to get Herman to address all of the cast at the beginning.
Not too shabby. Not too shabby at all.