I always think about theatre-making as an intense and exciting collaboration, much of which is an iceberg hidden under the surface of the performance our audiences see. I can safely flag (no pun intended) the process of working on this show as an impressively full-bodied iceberg. Since we've all been sharing that water for the past weeks, or would be if we were allowed to share water, I'd like to collect some inspiring actions and attitudes from the many collaborators who have contributed to this process. Here are some problems we solved: how to combine live voices, remote voices, recorded instruments, live music. Where to physically record instrumentalists. What software to use. Where to locate and how to safely rehearse musicians. How to integrate remote performers. How to have performers smooch when they can't touch. How to balance a rehearsal schedule with maintenance needs for the building. How to utilize round-robins of room usage during rehearsal periods to keep everyone safe. How to mic through a mask. How to ensure that props aren't shared during performance. How and when to sanitize the objects we use. How to rehearse outside at night without lights. How to stay connected with one another in the midst of much independent work. How to make it work without a scenic and lighting designer. How to work around quarantines. When and how to rehearse and perform an outdoor show in October, when the likelihood of rain is high. How to do more with less. How to lean into the pleasure of this hopeful show whenever possible. How to keep thinking about story and aesthetics in the midst of logistics. I am so grateful for Julia, my co-creator. For Jo, the student dramaturg who brought this show into conversation in the first place. To the incredible and committed production staff team: Rob, Ginny, Holly, Bonnie. To Monique for managing a plethora of contracts. To Ali and the students who assisted him, for filming. To Travis and the Music Department, John and the Art Department, Jeremy and the Film Program. To the students most of all: performers, stage managers, assistant stage managers, prop managers, crew. Thank you for your resilience and commitment. I am so proud of, and inspired by, each one of you.
Image Description: A Zoom screenshot featuring the cast and crew of Head Over Heels with Original Broadway Cast members Bonnie Milligan and Ricardo Zayas.
Image Description: A Zoom screenshot photo of Head Over Heels Original Broadway Cast member Ricardo Zayas.
Image Description: A Zoom screenshot photo of Head Over Heels Original Broadway Cast member Bonnie Milligan.
Created with images by DESIGNECOLOGIST - "TRIPPING ON LOVE" • Eric Nopanen - "Kick back, close your eyes, listen. Remember exactly where you were when you first heard it." • Annie Spratt - "I took this with my Mavic Pro drone, flying over this huge iceberg from the boat you see on the bottom right as my travel companions head off on a zodiac (which you can see moving away from us on the bottom left). I knew most of an iceberg is below water but when I saw it from above the sheer scale of it made me gasp!"