This morning I met Parag, Dale and Jackie in the Studio Theater for our paper tech and dry tech rehearsal. It went very well and I’m looking forward to rehearsals tomorrow. My cast needs a change and adding all the technical things will help.
This afternoon, after a relaxing fun time in the park (Shakespeare in the Park is another awsome idea that we should bring to Germany!) and after having hung up posters in Squirrel Hill, Basti and I talked a while about the project and the fact that opening night is so near. Suddenly, Basti said that he was tired of talking about the project over and over again. And I realized that he was right: We have been talking a lot about this project during the last few weeks, and about its purpose and its results. I remember Christina asking on the Blog why we were doing this. And I remember that I had an answer to this. Unfortunately I can’t remember what my answer was and instead, I ask this question again, now. Why are we doing this?
An intercultural theater collaboration that explores the differences and similarites between German and American theater – what does that mean?
I direct Cory’s play with three German actors, three American actors, an American stage manager and American set-, costume-, light- and sounddesigners. However, I have the impression that the participants aren’t always willing to compromise, or to embrace the other culture. Instead, everyone just does what they’re used to do. And I include myself. Although I’m trying to keep in mind what this is all about, I catch myself staying in my role pattern, because it’s easier and less frustrating. Also, I catch myself thinking that my way is the best way. That doesn’t mean that I haven’t learnt a lot. On the contrary, I have profited more from this project than I would have imagined in my wildest dreams. But it’s not about me. What is the result of the project itself? Why are we trying to connect two different theater cultures, when, in the end, we realize that it doesn’t really work? Or does it?
Is frustration an important part of this? Maybe it is. Maybe we should remember that most of us have been working on this project since May at least. Cory, Christina and I have been organizing and writing much longer than that. I guess it’s normal that we’re a little tired of the plays and the rehearsal process. Especially Christina and Parag, who have been working on “Who’s afraid of the Big Bad Wolf” in Germany, and Mary and Lauren, who have been working on “You can’t get lost” before, must have a hard time being high spirited about the shows. They must feel like they’ve been working on the same shows for ages.
I just hope that, in the end, everyone will have found a purpose for what we do here.