We began today by going over our “rehearsal schedule” for the remainder of our time. One of the participants had offered me some constructive criticism that, while she appreciates how flexible and open ended things have been, she feels that a little more structure would greatly benefit the group. As always, I listened to her and have provided some more structure. It seems to be a good thing for everyone to have something solid to look at that tells us ahead of time what we should be doing each day. We continued our work on Act I Scene ii today. Since everyone has such a great understanding of the characters at this point, we are working mostly on physicality. This is a challenge for everyone, but they are all making good progress. We also talked about Miranda’s challenge in this scene – even though she doesn’t have many lines, she must be constantly listening and reacting to what’s going on.
We also spent some time discussing the power struggle between Caliban and Prospero. The woman playing Caliban has been very aggressive in this first scene, and the woman playing Prospero feels that it may be too much. We discussed how Caliban’s rage comes from his actual lack of power, and that feeling of helplessness makes him lash out. The group determined that a good way for the woman playing Prospero to justify the fact that she lets him go on is to look at where Prospero is silent for awhile and then pulls the rug out from under Caliban with threats of physical violence, which scare him.
At this point, I asked the two women to take all of this in and then just follow their instincts in reacting to one another, whatever they did. This freed them up quite a bit, and the scene started to flow much more easily.