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Bad theater & more geocaching

My shift in the squirrel nursery Sunday night was short due to there being only 1 squirrel. It was an adorable little red. Some friends were performing in a free outdoor play nearby, so I thought I'd go support them and watch the show. The word "dreadful" doesn't even come close to describing the experience of seeing Love's Labour's Lost butchered like that. The theater company, Theater Terra Firma, has good intent - they want to support young actors (under the age of 25) and provide them with acting opportunities that they might not ordinarily have. This particular project, called "Shake in a Day" isn't doing anyone any favors. The premise is that the cast learns what their roles will be the day before and has 24 hours to rehearse the play.

Consequently, everybody (but two actors) carried notecards or had their scripts taped to books, fans, etc. Because of the short rehearsal process, the performance amounted to reading lines (as opposed to acting) and a few overly dramatic hammy gestures. One atrocious actor started by delivering his lines with a horrendous accent which then devolved into regular speech when he seemed to get lost doing his reading. Another actor blasted through her lines so fast that she had no idea what she was saying. There was no character development or nuance anywhere in this performance. Seeing a show performed like this is one of the reasons by people come to hate seeing Shakespeare or theater in general.

I don't know the reasoning behind the 24 hour time frame other than its gimmick factor. The performance is nothing more than a bad staged reading. When I've directed full-length staged readings, we rehearsed them for more than a day so the audience can enjoy seeing more than people reading words. But hey - the show was free and it was nice to spend an evening outdoors.

Speaking of directing, yesterday I found out that I'll be directing a piece that'll be performed in a showcase called "Minnesota Shorts." That happens in Mankato, MN at the beginning of September. This means I'm directing two shows both of which open on the same weekend. Thankfully they're both short.

Earlier Sunday I walked along the Minneapolis Diagonal Trail and picked up 18 geocaches in just under 3 hours. The walk was pleasant and I had to do very little bushwhacking. Some of the containers I found were rather fun and creative. The temperature hovered above 90 and the humidity was high. The skies were cloudy which helped alleviate some of the heat. Since this was a mostly urban run, I had few wildlife encounters. I encountered a pack of chipmunks scurrying on a hillside and watched several bluejays flying low among some trees.

After seeing the above show, I decided to grab a few more caches before dark and upped my count to 24, a personal best! These extra caches were scattered in St. Paul along my route home. I've decided to find at least 100 caches this month which I should be able to do easily. I need only 22 more and I've got 14 days to do it.

Tonight I'm going to happy hour with Socially Awkward, an improv team. I won this in an auction to benefit HUGE theater. Should be fun!

Comments

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purplesquirrel
Jul. 18th, 2012 08:13 pm (UTC)
This company does produce full-length rehearsed plays throughout the year. I've seen some of them and thought they were good. Improvising Shakespeare would require much more talent and knowledge than most actors have.
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