First Scrooge

Suddenly Carol. The traverse makes things a lot harder for Jack and I to keep the string tight between us. I don’t actually have to be in work until afternoon tomorrow thank God because we all went out and decompressed after the show and then I got home and had the first evening I’ve had so far getting to know KitKat who moved in after Brian.

Orphan Christmas will be happening at mine. I’m looking forward to the season. Jack and I just have to switch out the bit of our heads that is finding our light, and remember to connect with each other.

Our opening show was glorious, although not at capacity. The building we are in used to be a shooting club, and our changing room has turned out to be the gunpowder store. I have to put on my nightie in there and then wait by a load of empty gun racks to do the show. Eventually there’s a bit of frantic activity involving torches and smoke, and I get to listen to Jack working the crowd for a couple of minutes before I go on. In some ways it’s my favourite bit – I can get a guage on the nature of the crowd based on how they are with him. It’s my only downtime for the whole show really. They are always a lovely lot, and this evening was no exception. In half a decade this remarkable piece of madness only ever falls down when there’s a catering issue. I’ve not got to know the chef yet, but that’s because there’s a whole team of people headed up by Tristan who have that. This is the closest I’ve ever got to doing Carol as just an actor. It’s testament to the production. I didn’t need to build the set or troubleshoot the catering – it’s all in hand. The only things left that I do on tech are things that have been part of my show so long it just feels natural to do them. It feels like we’ve grown up.

I think back to Manchester with John, having a wonderful time with a much broader show. I think to the few shows John and I did in The Guildhall in York – how the music rang. I’m told I showed up on Good Morning Britain yesterday. It wouldn’t surprise me if the footage was from that counting room. Then we ended up at The Arts, with me running out into Leicester Place to the crowds. Beautiful and bonkers with India operating. Then Bishopsgate and the cold and the celebrity chef. Then up in Sheffield in a space we built for ourselves out of whatever was lying around Deli. And then this year. With a designer and a stage manager. It looks great. Once we nail down the “acting in traverse” skill then we will have a glorious show.. And frankly, we already have it. It needed an audience for us to see what lands and what doesn’t.

Here’s be an hour before opening. Don’t be fooled. Yes I was tired. But I also took the photo with eyes closed. Fake news!


Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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