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on the past six months: part three

Part Three: March

March was defined by the play I was directing: "The Odd Couple - Female Version". This play was my senior project, and had been in the making since July of the previous year. There had been many twists and bumps along the way (I had to recast half of the cast at various intervals), but it was my baby.

So, at the start of March, the cast moved into the theater, and began blocking. Rehearsals began to get longer. This is also when the Great Vera Hunt came into being. My original Vera had stopped showing for rehearsals. She thought she could manage without, I knew she couldn’t. I told her she either had to come to every remaining rehearsal, or I would drop her. She didn’t come. I was out a Vera. I then cast tried to cast another girl for the role. She had to drop a week later due to conflicts with the other play she was starring in. A week later, I still hadn’t found anybody for the part, so I stepped in. A week after that, my best friend Linda mentioned that she wished she could be in the play. She was quickly ushered into the part, with two weeks to prepare for Opening Night.

Outside of the Vera Debacle, there was also the question of finding the remaining set pieces, props, costumes, and getting posters out. A concessions list was in the office, with no names until a week before the play. Most of the costumes and props were pilfered from my house, and unloaded onto any flat surface backstage. The poster came to me only two weeks before the show was to open, and I quickly made rounds posting them anywhere I could think to. Rehearsals were now going everyday after school, tensions were rising, and lines were still being memorized.

The weeks leading up to Opening Night, I was going crazy. There was too much to take care of, and too little time to do it. Things kept going wrong, and I was absolutely losing my ability to cope with anything else. I went to school in the morning, worked on the play whenever I got the chance, went to rehearsal everyday after school, went home, and was asleep by 8:30. My emotions were haywire, and it didn’t help that this was when many colleges decided to reject me.

Opening Night became Gala Night, and I had to find people to make me some fancy food for the occasion. Finally, the last rehearsal was over, and the cast was dressed and nervous backstage, ready for Gala Night. Food was on the tables, tickets were sold, people had come (thank God). And then we did it. The lights dimmed, the actors came on stage, and the play began. I sat in the tech booth watching what I had created unfold before a real audience.

It was after the first act that I realized Moody’s hadn’t included cream with their coffee, and that I had forgotten to buy utensils and napkins for the fancy food I had prepared. But otherwise, the play was a complete success. People laughed, all the scene changes happened just as they were supposed to. It had worked.

I had never been prouder.

The next week flew by. We had one rehearsal during the week, but we basically kicked back and let the show take its natural course.

Immediately after the play, my body gave up on me, and I came down with [SPOILER ALERT for part four] the flu, pink eye, and a terrible ear infection over the course of a week. It was simply too much.

However, I absolutely loved that play and cast to pieces. We really pulled something off with that show.

Hopefully part four will be up soon.