Thursday 21st July

Show Day Number 2!!

Once again, we spent the morning organising ourselves and sorting out the final details for performance. Then, we met the cast and crew at Beaumont at 12:50 (the start of lunchtime there) – it was going to be a very busy day! Having already performed once we had spent the last couple of days altering the blocking for the new space – we changed the audience configuration from end on at Trestle to traverse (on two sides) so that as many people could see the performance as possible.

Over lunchtime, we set up the audience seating and positioned the props; changed into costume and switched on the lights. We had been invited to perform the piece for a third time, during the afternoon at school. It was treated as an open dress rehearsal, with an audience of year 12 and year 10 drama students as well as some staff who couldn’t make it to the evening performance, but myself and the assistant directors were still making notes to give to the actors afterwards. It was fantastic to be able to show the piece to some more people – especially those at the age group which the piece is about.

Due to the new audience configuration, we also had to switch around the cast positions. When not on stage, the actors would now be sitting among the audience so it was very helpful to have a rehearsal with genuine audience members in those seats next to them. The performance went very well and we were so grateful to Beaumont for letting us add an extra one in – the project is about spreading awareness so the more people who see the piece the better!

After the first show we had to get many, many fans into the room to try and cool it down for the next audience. We went outside and went through some final notes on the bench dedicated to Mrs Rowlands just outside our drama studio. I didn’t have very much to say, so soon afterwards we reset the stage for the evening performance and took some food outside for a break. A two show day is a lot of work, but we managed to have a good hour to relax with each other!

At about 5:45pm we went over to the hall to warm up. Most things were focused on concentration and ensemble work to bring the company together for the final time. We had our last game of concentration, adding in as many levels to the game as we could for the last time.

Then it was time to set up Front of House and for the audience to start arriving. Just like last time, I got very nervous at this point but I had some fantastic people on the team with me to stop me getting stressed about anything at all! Thankyou very much to Louisa Brigulio, Elizabeth Barber and Cerys Falvey (as well as my mum and Miss Shepherd) for helping me out!

Finally we reached 7:30pm and it was showtime for the last time. I was so proud watching the cast perform their best yet – they’ve all worked so hard and gave this final audience a stunning performance. Thank you so much to everyone who came to see the performance on Thursday evening – you were a fantastic audience and gave the actors so much to play off. It was such a special performance, and I am so grateful to everyone who helped to create that!

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Theatre of Minds has been an amazing year of experiences for us both. We haven’t yet calculated how much money we have raised as a donation to Young Minds, but we have already been blown away by the responses we have had to the piece. This has been a very therapeutic process for me, and I’ve never been more proud to be part of a production. Thankyou all!

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