Medusa: Rehearsal Diary – Week 2

By Hattie Taylor

Start of week two and Verity is back, hooray! We can get back into lovely music now. It’s a weird week, made up of 3 long days rather than 5 normal length ones, and everyone is starting to feel the time pressure a little bit. We have a look at a revised version of scene four, which we struggled with at the end of last week, and it feels like it’s working now. Not only is this exciting, but it means we have a finalised version of the script, and Adam is leaving us alone with it…

Robin seems to be having a lot of fun playing the bad guy this week, albeit a loveable bad guy. We spend Tuesday afternoon looking at the last scene and working out how Medusa would fight. Our Medusa heads are still being made, so for the time being the ladies are trying to be intimidating with bicycle helmets instead. They’re not doing a bad job though! The gorgeous noises they make as the women at the start of the showing are slowly being replaced by more and more horrific things for Medusa. Tuesday ends with some singing and trying to create a scream that will make Theseus’s brain leak out of his ears. I think they’ve found it! (In a good way)

Photos by ShotAway

Day two and our focus is on scene 3 – the spinners. We read it through in the morning, and director Toby thinks that with a bit of play we can get some comedy out of it. The goal is for the spinners to be a little bit like genie from Aladdin, constantly shape shifting and becoming different characters – something that isn’t quite as easy to achieve on stage as it is on film! We really like making our actresses jobs as hard as possible. By lunch time they’ve been ninjas, Scottish witches, children, psychiatrists, Russian spies (my personal favourite), and many more. Max pops in during the afternoon with a present – shoes! Yay! Robin has some epic boots, Anna has a mini version of said boots, Janna gets gladiator sandals, and Kirsty has a rather delightful patent leather pair, with leopard print heels to add to the look. At the end of the day Michelle comes in to help out with movement, and it gives the scene that little extra lift. I have a feeling it’s going to be an audience favourite.

Photos by ShotAway

Thursday morning comes around and we start by going over what we did last night. Amazingly the ladies remember almost all of it, despite how much new information was thrown at them yesterday. The afternoon brings with it the first time since the read through we’ve gone through the show start to finish, with an audience of workshop leaders. The run goes quite well, some bits need a little more work, but we have another week of rehearsal for that. We’re running at about the right length which is a relief. After the run, the cast and Verity stay to do some singing while the rest of us head off to plan the accompanying schools workshop. I’m quite jealous of the kids that will get to do them, I wish I’d had something like this when I was at school!

Medusa plays in Bristol Old Vic Studio between 7-11 July. Find out more, and book tickets, here

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