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Twelfth Night: a Breakdown

Wow this post is a long time coming. Sorry about the delay, but you know things happen. Well… Four things. Well… Four things and a lizard. (name that reference!) Here begins the post that I meant to put up two weeks ago:

PiPE DREAM theatre’s production of Twelfth Night has come and gone – and it seems strange that after two plus months of preparation that it can already be over. In loving memory of the show that was gone too soon (unless you hate Shakespeare that is, in which case it couldn’t go soon enough (but how on god’s green Earth could you hate Shakespeare? He’s the English language’s largest proprietor of the dirty joke (cause in non-English languages I think Aristophanes has him beat (obligatory fourth parenthetical phrase goes last)))) here’s a breakdown of the show.

We only had a handful of full cast rehearsals, trusting to our Players to fall truly madly deeply in love with the script and to have it all memorized in a matter of minutes… I may be exaggerating. In any case, it was an interesting experiment to put on a show with so little and some unorthodox prep time. One of the best nights was easily when cast gathered for one last speed-through of the script before the show. Out of the 13 people in the cast, 7 gathered in person at our stage manager’s house; the other 6 were represented by cell phones. Seriously, six cell phones lay in a circle in the middle of a table, surrounded by chips and dip, and were picked up and placed back down depending on what scene we were in. For the finale, they simply existed as a line of phones on the arm of a couch while our Feste and Olivia looked down upon them, attempting to guess which speaker they should yell iambic pentameter into next.

PD premiered Twelfth Night in Yonkers in a private performance at 1 Alexander Place. Someone must have sacrificed something lame to the rain gods that day because instead of performing the show outside in their lovely courtyard, we ended up in the much smaller art-deco social room. It was certainly one of the oddest places we’ve ever played, however the show itself was still quite a bit of fun. Residents came (and most of them stayed) to watch us speak in what is basically a foreign language. The actors all had just as much fun. The fact that the show was able to transmute and work in such a space proves that it doesn’t necessarily take a fancy set or expensive lights to communicate a show – just the right group of people.

The main event however was at The Bronxville Women’s Club – a place that PiPE DREAM is no stranger to: DREAMS, Sleepy Hollow, and 3GD have all premiered there (more premieres to come!) Twelfth Night was the first to be performed not on their stage, but in their garden. Over 80 friends and patrons came to see the show, and it was an unmitigated success. We were able to raise over $300 for the BWC and managed to scrape a bit of change for ourselves as well – we sold refreshments (wine! water! donuts!), t-shirts, CDs, jewelry, shot glasses, keychains, and even a 50/50 raffle. In addition we also had a free raffle for two tickets to our 3rd Annual PiPE DREAM gala (which will debut our performance of Masque of the Red Death and will once again be at the BWC!)

With nothing but Christmas lights, a table, and a couple of chairs, Twelfth Night was brought to life in front of a real audience. We even had a write up about it in the Bronxville Patch online (see previous post.)

This has become long winded so is going to end. Right now.

OK minor lies; one last thing. You can view photos from the show and listen to the score by going to our shiny new PiPE DREAM website (oooh shiny). Twelfth Night’s page is here: http://pipedreamtheatre.com/TwelfthNight.html

Next up: a recap of the 3 Ghosts readthrough! See you then, DREAMers!

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