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Creditors: The Last Rehearsals - La Jolla Playhouse Blog

Creditors: The Last Rehearsals

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Doug Wright

Doug Wright, adapter and director of La Jolla Playhouse's world-premiere production of CREDITORS.

For the past four weeks, our three-actor ensemble have been realizing how richly layered Strindberg’s play is, how well-oiled its dramaturgical machinery, and how confidently they can rely on the great Swedish master to deliver them unto his gem of a one-act play in three scenes.

For the first two week of rehearsal, the actors were called to rehearsal only for the scenes in which they appeared. That meant only two actors at a time. The first scene is between Gustav and Adolf, the second scene is between Adolf and Tekla (with an unseen Gustav eavesdropping in an adjoining room) and the third is Tekla and Gustav (this time with Adolf eavesdropping). Tekla (Kathryn Meisle) is unaware who is occupying the room next door.

Last week, Doug Wright asked that T. Ryder Smith (playing Gustav) and Omar Metwally (playing Adolf) come to rehearsal and, for the first time, sit in a designated area that suggests the room that adjoins the space where the play unfolds and listen to the scene taking place in the next room. They were, in effect, eavesdropping on each other’s scenes. This resulted in many discoveries that shed new light on each characters’ motivations and intentions, that enriching their individual performances and scenes together.

This past week, the final week in the rehearsal room, was a revelation. At the beginning of the week, the actors did run-throughs of each scene. Then they did run-throughs of two scenes back to back. Toward the end of the week, there was a run-through of the entire play every afternoon. Each day, from moment to moment, the play took on increasing humor and danger. By Sunday, the last day of rehearsal, the actors performed a run-through for our set, lighting and costume designers who have arrived for technical rehearsals, which begin on Tuesday. The ensemble were greeted with resounding applause. As Doug said, “We’re on the edge of a thriller.” Just what Strindberg would have loved to hear.

We’re ready for tech in the Potiker Theatre where our beautiful Creditors set is about to be unveiled.

2 Comments:

  1. Creditors was like having a root canal. Although the actress was very skillful, nothing could redeem this ugly, bitter, exercise. I was a big fan of I AM My Own Wife, but what can Wright be thinking? He has said that LJPH is a good venue to test plays as the audience is “intelligent.” Intelligent patrons should let the Playhouse know that this is not a way to build audiences! I volunteer at the playhouse and have been a subscriber for many years and always supported Playhouse efforts to break new ground, but this warmed over hash should have stayed buried. The tone never altered. It started and stayed strident and poisonous with never a breath of variation. Strindberg isn’t exactly known for happy plays but there are other better works of his to offer.

    Deb Sanborn

    2009.10.11
    12:44 pm

  2. Very good show, superb acting…well done!!

    Stephen Kougias

    2009.10.12
    10:45 am