Rebecca Euchler is one of our 2015 Artistic Engagement Apprentices, an elite group of emerging theatre artists learning from multiple departments in our company. As a capstone to their experience, they will be performing in JANE AUSTEN’S EMMA this December. Rebecca shared her thoughts on the early days of rehearsal as a guest blogger:
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect as I walked into the TheatreWorks Silicon Valley building for the first rehearsal of Emma. I’ve done a lot of theatre in my life, but this would be my first full production working with actual professional actors in a company whose sole purpose is to produce theatre.
I was able to get a taste of working with professionals during the 2015 New Works Festival earlier this summer, where I read stage directions for Marie and Rosetta. I truly enjoyed that experience, it was a blast putting together three staged readings of a musical in 10 days! I also worked with the Education and Marketing departments and learned about what goes into the running of a theater behind the scenes. My experience as an Artistic Engagement Apprentice so far had been quite the adventure, and now we were going to get to dip our toes into the pool of professional theater.
Rebecca in rehearsals for MARIE AND ROSETTA with playwright George Brandt, actors Michelle E. Jordan and Chaz Hodges, musical director William Liberatore, director Neil Pepe, and the production team.
The opening design presentation was fun and quick; a chance for the actors, crew, sponsoring producers, and TheatreWorks staff to see the directorial and production vision for the show. These actors and crew of Emma are very nice and kind of goofy.
Costume Director Jill Bowers with Rebecca during a fitting.
Working with director Robert Kelley is certainly refreshing. He knows what he wants to see and how to communicate that to the actors, but he knows how to listen to the actors when they have questions or opinions on character or blocking. The main difference I have been aware of between professional, Equity rehearsals and college productions is the pace in which they move. Emma has a rehearsal period of three and a half weeks, therefore blocking and music must be learned extremely quickly. Like all actors, the Emma cast gets a little wacky during long rehearsal days.
The scene I’m most excited about seeing at the end of the rehearsal process is Harriet’s song Humiliation, because it promises to be very entertaining. All in all, this has been an exciting week of rehearsals and for the rest of my journey, I’m looking forward to learning from and learning with the incredible actors of Emma!- Rebecca Euchler
Rebecca takes a twirl during her costume fitting for EMMA.