The Light Burns Blue: Rehearsal Diary – Week 2

Propolis Theatre (Made in Bristol 2015) and Young Company member Maisie Newman shares her diary from rehearsals for The Light Burns Blue. We catch up with the company as they return to the rehearsal room following their intensive week, and pick up where they left off…

The Light Burns Blue in rehearsals. Photos by James D Kent.

The Light Burns Blue in rehearsals. Photos by James D Kent.

The week after intensive. The day is Wednesday. Twenty 16-25 year old’s are sat patiently in a circle in rehearsal room one. The last light of the day gently spills into the space and there is a soft breeze coming in from the row of windows, that have just been opened on the right side of the room. The space that surrounds them is filled with with the echoes of their explorations of Cottingley and The Beck from the last month. Slide projectors, mirrors, various light sources, silks, dyes and a loop pedal surround the space. The room, which has been a hive of activity, sound and movement, now sits eerily still, and apart from the soft discussion that is occurring between the director and the writer, most of the room is silent. There is a collective caught breath of excitement in the air. A pile of fresh white scripts rest casually on the floor. So new, they almost seem to glow from within. Today is the first read through of The Light Burns Blue.

Silva Semerciyan, has done an incredible job of collecting ideas and moments from our explorations of characters and the world of Cottingley in the last month. Our impulsive devising and heated discussions, lead by director Lisa Gregan – on women in history, what art is and the mechanics of photography – have been beautifully written into a very exciting script. We had the opportunity to explore different scenes and characters further on Friday which, as Lisa Gregan announced at the start of the session, was a “Casting workshop”. An evening of quick fire rehearsed read-throughs of scenes and swapping characters, meant we were exhausted by the end of the session, which seemed to blur by.

The Light Burns Blue in rehearsals. Photos by James D Kent.

The Light Burns Blue in rehearsals. Photos by James D Kent.

Being able to see a finalised structure and get scenes on their feet, means that this week has sparked a change of pace in the rehearsal process. By the end of it, everyone was inspired and a loud buzz of creative discussion filled the room that, on Wednesday, was briefly silent.

The Light Burns Blue plays in Bristol Old Vic Studio between 15-18 April. Book tickets here, and check back next week for another diary from the rehearsal room.


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