Good evening, Intrepid Readers. You’ve seen this chart before in an earlier post. It’s by the artist/author Austin Kleon (follow him on his website here) and it is as true for me today as it was when I first posted it.
Tonight was the first tech rehearsal for Request Concert and it went very well. The tech process is really quite smooth for a play with one character, one set, and one change of costume. After the run was finished, my senior colleague gave me and our other colleague, who is the performer, some of the most concise, helpful feedback I have ever received about a show in process.
For the past week or so, I have been in the Dark Night Of The Soul dot on the above chart. Not because I didn’t believe in the production, or didn’t think it was good–I do and it is. Rather, the darkness was because I couldn’t see the show anymore. I have seen it so much that I couldn’t see it. It’s like that thing when you say a word over and over and over so much that it starts to lose its meaning and even its place as a part of your language. I knew that was happening, but I didn’t know how to stop it. I knew the answer was bring in another set of eyes, but whose? I didn’t have an Assistant Director on this production, and our rehearsals have been during the daytime, when folks are working/in class/teaching class, etc.
Lesson learned. The Dark Night Of The Soul is for real, and you have to ask for help when you’re in it. Ask someone. Ask anyone.
The feedback that my senior colleague gave me was that the ending of the play is too much of a surprise. We don’t see enough of the depths of her despair. We don’t see enough chinks in her armor. And those chinks add up to a person on the brink. A person whose stakes are as high as they can be. A person who could make any decision. Go any direction.
And that feedback was exactly what I needed to move myself out of my Dark Night. I see the way forward. I have a purpose for myself and a thing to specifically be looking for and working on in our remaining rehearsals.
That’s a good feeling to head to sleep with, Intrepid Readers. Good night and good luck.