The final days in the rehearsal room
The final week in the rehearsal room is always fascinating, especially with a new piece – pulling the whole thing together, remembering what we did (not always easy when there is so much detail), remembering every word and every note (ditto) and shaping it all into a continuous flowing drama. Of course we are largely dependent on the music to make this happen, and I am thrilled to say that we have a real opera here: a drama that functions through the music and is enhanced and extended by it. That said, we are not yet ready to put it in front of an audience – there is much to do: some rest and continued learning for the cast and some further thinking and sharing of ideas for the creative team; the first orchestra rehearsals – two days alone and then one day working with the singers without any staging (the rehearsal called the Sitzprobe – “sitting and trying”). This is where the musical aspect of the project takes a huge leap forward and our conductor Richard Baker will be able to bring the score to full life whilst working closely with the composer on refining certain aspects. As a composer in his own right, and with outstanding experience conducting new opera, Richard has a keen eye and ear for this work and Guto is in very safe hands. I look forward to hearing how these rehearsals go.
It might seem strange to reveal that I am not attending the Sitzprobe, but I am already in rehearsal in St Louis working on the USA premiere of The Trial. Yet again, Music Theatre Wales is spreading its international wings, and an adaptation of our world premiere production of The Trial will be presented by Opera Theatre of St Louis on June 4th.
Meanwhile, I am of course still thinking about Y Tŵr – in correspondence with the designer and conductor, chewing over various things that need further attention and wondering how the whole production will work when I return for the final three days of rehearsal at the Sherman Theatre with everything coming together – stage, orchestra, lighting etc etc. A fabulous, exciting and challenging time and yet again the thrill of the new!