No, my fingers are not stuttering. At DreamWrights we have two opening nights for our four double cast shows. So all the excitement, nervousness, high energy, hugs and flowers are experienced two nights in a row!
How do subsequent performances differ? Well, all of the above are present, but the degree of intensity is different. For a casts’ first performance the energy level cannot only be felt but actually seen! I always say, “If only the energy from these casts and crews could be captured we would be able to run the theatre for a month without electricity.”
Another favorite of mine is seeing someone receiving flowers for the first time. The joy felt by all ages and genders at that moment is … just so special. We seldom think about it, but men don’t often get flowers … they are the givers right? However we all like pretty things, and everyone likes to be congratulated, in this special way, for a job well done.
After weeks of rehearsal, having your first audience is almost magical. All of the previous work now has a purpose … to share the story and characters with other people, aka the audience. And in turn, the audience teaches sometimes more then the director ever can. When there is laughter and/ or applause it’s like a light bulb goes off.
Actors often don’t understand something is funny until the audience tells them by laughing. And applause is, like flowers, a way to tell the cast and crew that they are doing a good job. The director, is much like a parent, you can tell your child something over and over again … but if someone else tells them the same thing then it is validated. To that I say, “Whatever works.!”
Enough from me … here are some thoughts on opening nights from both casts plus:
My favorite part of opening night is always my first scene, because its fun to think you can see lots of people then you go on and you see… black!!! The stage lights are so bright you can’t see the audience at all. Julia Ferrell, 10
Opening night we had an almost full audience, and I enjoyed working in the new preshow play area fishing pond before the show! Jacob Schlenker, 15
There is a new wonderful opportunity for DreamWrights friends to prepare the minds for seeing Tom Sawyer. Now, before seeing the show, there is an interactive area with games and activities for children of all ages. The fun games include fishing, treasure hunting, and there is even a place where they can dig for worms! There are also beautiful fish that can be colored after they are “caught”. I love this new, creative and engaging way to include everyone! Carol Alvarnaz, Adult Audience Member
I loved it so much. I wish that opening night was every night. Addie Steel, 10
Opening night was nerve-wracking but exciting. I loved dancing in my costumes with the twirly skirts. Michaela Wagner, 16
Everyone who has done a DreamWrights show before knows about the pre-show circle! Tonight we welcomed some new friends to this fun tradition – And then we were off! All the work, all the time, all the effort – it paid off tonight and I was so proud to be a part of it. Thanks to everyone who made tonight’s show a success! Bill Steel, adult