Stilts Songs and Sobbing
Very excited to be writing my very first Metta theatre blog post, as the assistant director for their next show - circus and puppetry extravaganza - The King of Tiny Things. The first week has been jam packed with singing and circus play time, and I have spent a good amount of time in awe of our multi-talented cast. As a fairly fledgling director the professional rehearsal room is already a new thing to me, but circus is something of which I am a real Grade One novice. But already, even after a few days, I think it's going to be magical and the skill level of the circus artists alone has been enough to wow me.
Pretty much the first thing I saw in rehearsals was the wonderful Maddie creating a daddy long legs on three, and then four stilts several metres above the ground. Then we spent some time working through the 8 original songs with award-winning composer Jon Nicholl's - sounding amazing - especially the finale which had Poppy crying so much (in a good way) that she had to hide behind one of the puppets.
The set is also swimming along nicely, and whilst Jon and Poppy were tightening up the rest of the music I lent a hand in the metamorphosis (see what I did there) of a less-than-sturdy shed to serious levels of sturdiness. Without giving it away, I think the newly sturdy shed is going to give us greater scope for some unexpected circus play. Most fun so far has been the opportunity to see Poppy at work – her favourite word is 'play' – rehearsals take place in a friendly collaborative atmosphere, and by playing the cast are finding some really great stuff. Bodes well for a fantastic circus theatre show about bugs for the whole family right? Too right. Also, Noah and baby Finn, part of the Metta Theatre family (who are quite present throughout the whole process) are unbelievably cute.
By James Ellis