November 7, 2006

5... First Preview

Day 5. Friday, November 3

What is a preview? From the point of view of the audience member it’s usually a fairly normal performance. We sell tickets to subscribers and the public, though at a slight discount, and invite some of our neighbors to come for very little (thanks to an outreach sponsorship from Citizen's Bank). We also have pay your age previews. It’s amazing to me how many of our subscribers really like to come to the first preview. They like seeing something that is out there for the first time to an audience, and know there’s a chance they might see something that the rest of our patrons might never see, like a mistake, or something that get’s changed or cut before press Opening on Wednesday. What makes it different is that we’ll take what been learned from experiencing the show with an audience and try to meld that in. And we usually keep rehearsing, with up to five hours of rehearsal a day until opening. I’ll watch first preview but then, if I can manage, not see it again until opening. Often it’s a very different experience after a few days away. In a good way.

We didn’t rehearse much today though, after spending a half hour working with some new TV cues the cast arrives and they run a couple of scenes. They only work about an hour together.

Four year old Gabe Emerson (the voice of Danny) came in and gave his advice. Turns out his true calling may be that of Director. Watch out. Really though it was very touching to have a four year old hanging around the set. It was a little spooky to see him playing in the bedroom. The show now has it's ghost.

The preview goes well. It’s fun to sit in the crowd and hear them whisper to each other. It’s not so fun to listen to the opening of the candy wrappers.

(Photos: (top) Howie (Jordan Lage) attempts to relax his wife Becca (Donna Bullock) with a massage. (Bottom): Nat (Maureen Anderman, l.) and Becca (Donna Bullock) share a quiet moment in Danny's room in the Huntington Theatre Company's production of Rabbit Hole by David Lindsay-Abaire, running through Dec. 3 at the Boston University Theatre. Photo: Eric Antoniou.)

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