Comrades!

Comrades!

This is a big weekend for the Bright Room cast. It’s our first run through! It’s going to be a “rough draft” if you will, but I’m very excited to see how it’s all shaping up.

This is actually going to be the first time I’ve seen some of the other actors in rehearsal since the reading in January. Because of the way this play is set up, the rehearsal process has basically been broken down into three groups (and please note that these are the names that I have given these groups to help explain them): the “modern day” group, which consists of Zillah and all the people she interacts with in modern day Berlin. There’s the “new friends” group, which includes the people Agnes knows through her political ties as well as Die Alte (I’m not going to say too much about her because I feel it’s important for you to see her for yourself) and finally there’s the “old friends” group, which is the one my character Paulinka is part of.  This group has known each other for a while (probably years) and we are trying to help each other get through the bad times. Of course what ties everyone in the play together is Agnes and her apartment. She is the home base, the nurturer who we all seek out to comfort us. For my my character, she has become somewhat of a moral compass, someone whose opinion Paulinka values very highly and whom she runs to for comfort when things don’t go well.

I’m very much looking forward to seeing what the other actors have discovered through their respective rehearsals. It’s going to be nice to get a feel for the play as a whole rather than thinking in terms of smaller pieces.

Welcome to Germany!

Welcome to Germany!

It’s great to be back! Back at Custom Made Theater Company (last time I was here we were performing at the Off-Market Theater), back working on another fabulous Tony Kushner play, and back to the Berlin featured in “A Bright Room Called Day.” I had the pleasure of doing this show back in college and I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to get the chance to perform it again. I’m looking forward to seeing what new things I will be able to discover as Paulinka, and how some additional life experience will change the way I see her.

Something that has already struck me in the first few rehearsals is the political climate at this time in history. Post WWI, Germany is in financial ruin, there are rallies and feuding political parties everywhere, and yet Berlin is a creative and artistic hub. Still, somehow the Nazis are able to take control and lead the world into another war, and with this play we see it happen bit by bit. Kushner has a way of taking what is a complex and difficult vortex of events and breaking it down into smaller digestible pieces by showing us how it effects each and every one of his characters. Even the selfish and vain actress Paulinka has her moments of triumph in difficult situations within the context of this play.

I won’t say too much more, only that I am thrilled to be back on this journey. Welcome to Germany my friends, soon to be playing at a San Francisco theater near you!