Fresh Eyes

Part of our Table | Room | Stage initiative, Artists Rep’s Fresh Eyes program brings ‘civilians’ into the rehearsal process.

On selected productions each season, we invite writers from diverse backgrounds to join us for a few rehearsals, and then share their observations of the process and the play in the Fresh Eyes blog. We hope the distinctive perspectives of our guests will illuminate the inner workings of a production, and enrich the experience for our audiences and community at large.

Fresh Eyes on Prudencia Hart, part 2

Fresh Eyes on Prudencia Hart, part 2

Sympathy for the Devil Days later I am still enjoying the warmth of the whiskey and wassail from seeing The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart. In my previous post, I observed the play is invested in the idea that how we talk to one another, the stories we use to make...

Fresh Eyes on Prudencia Hart, part 1

Fresh Eyes on Prudencia Hart, part 1

Of Freedom and Folk Discourses Listening at the table, The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart pops and fizzes with cultural specificity. The play opens with two dueling folk ballads—narrative poems meant to be read aloud to maximize their oral-formulaic techniques and...

Fresh Eyes on School Girls, part 2

Fresh Eyes on School Girls, part 2

“As you can see,” Lava Alapai, director of School Girls, told us in the first design meeting, “we will have a set, and there will be a roof.” She laughs to herself and shifts back and forth in front of a TV monitor showing a rendering of the set, making us laugh too....

Fresh Eyes on School Girls, part 1

Fresh Eyes on School Girls, part 1

I’m sitting in a rehearsal hall at this production's first table read and I know nothing except the title: School Girls, Or: The African Mean Girls Play . I picked to write about this particular show on a whim. Like the few things I get to say yes to these days, it...

Fresh Eyes on La Ruta, part 2

Fresh Eyes on La Ruta, part 2

Within the Sand On the set of La Ruta, the sand encroaches from every side, a symbol of the constant, surrounding fear of daily life for the women of Juarez. “... the only thing between our beds and the desert is a thin layer of concrete.” The piles of sand in the...

Fresh Eyes on La Ruta, part 1

Fresh Eyes on La Ruta, part 1

Driven By the Wind Attending the table reading of La Ruta was a powerful experience, and there are many vivid scenes that linger in my mind. One scene in particular resonates with me for a variety of reasons. Though the stage direction was just read aloud, I could...

Fresh Eyes on WOLF PLAY, 2nd Installation

Fresh Eyes on WOLF PLAY, 2nd Installation

This week our Fresh Eyes observer, Martha Spence, was in rehearsals watching as the characters and their relationships emerge and start to clarify. Here are her thoughts on this intricate process: I find the play both thought provoking, and emotionally engaging. Here...

Fresh Eyes on WOLF PLAY, 1st Installation

Fresh Eyes on WOLF PLAY, 1st Installation

WOLF PLAY by Hansol Jung began rehearsals this week -- an exciting development for this play that was commissioned in 2017 by Table|Room|Stage. The story, created and shared by the Wolf, centers around a young Korean boy (Jeenu) who was adopted by an American family...

Fresh Eyes on Teenage, 6th Installment

Fresh Eyes on Teenage, 6th Installment

TEENAGE DICK is in the last phase of rehearsal: preview week, when the final element of any production -- the audience -- arrives. Having an audience changes everything: laughs affect timing of  lines, bodies soak up sound and volume has to be adjusted, skilled actors...

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 5th Installation

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 5th Installation

Tech week is upon us! TEENAGE DICK has moved from the rehearsal hall to the stage, and all of the technical aspects -- lights, sounds, costumes and set -- are being integrated into the play. For several days, the actors' primary job is to deliver the cues for some...

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 4th Installation

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 4th Installation

It's the last week of working in the rehearsal room for TEENAGE DICK, and the focus is on refining and enriching the actors' work before they move into the theatre next week: adding layers to characters and relationships, getting punches exactly right, building the...

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 3rd Installation

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 3rd Installation

Rehearsals for TEENAGE DICK are focussed on scene work and fight choreography this week. The actors are building their characters layer by layer, always pursuing greater clarity, depth and complexity. Additionally, they are exploring the many ways that their...

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 2nd Installment

Fresh Eyes on Teenage Dick, 2nd Installment

TEENAGE DICK is in its second week of rehearsal, and the work is now focussed on how the actors move during the play: staging, plus fight and dance choreography. Each week, we invite our Fresh Eyes volunteers to attend rehearsal and then share their observations. We...

Fresh Eyes on TEENAGE DICK, 1st Installment

Fresh Eyes on TEENAGE DICK, 1st Installment

Rehearsals began this Tuesday, December 11th, for TEENAGE DICK, Mike Lew's new play that is "vaguely after Richard III". Lew takes the broad outlines of Shakespeare's play and resets it in an American high school. Richard, a student with cerebral palsy, is determined...

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