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Fun fact

April 28, 2021

The very first read through of A Divine Comedy took place at this table in my flat in Finchley Road.

The table read had been organised to establish the length of the play. (The BBC was looking for half hour radio play submissions and I’d found simply reading the whole thing out loud myself really didn’t do the timing trick.)

Present were my actor friends Richard and Annie and another actor, Danny, a friend of Annie’s.

Before they arrived, I went through the script to work out which characters crossed paths during the play so we could double up.

The parts were assigned thus: Annie to read the two female characters, Anne Hathaway and Queen Elizabeth; Richard to read Shakespeare and the Bishop of London; Danny to read Thomas Brend (manager of the Globe theatre) and the Dean of London; and me to read the Earl of Essex.

The reading was going well until we got to the beginning of scene ten, the Bull and Bush tavern in Southwark, when Annie pointed out that no one had been assigned to read the innkeeper.

This is, of course, only a fun fact if you’re familiar with the revised-to-be-performed-on-Zoom script I created in January.

The rehearsals for next month’s live online performances of same are going incredibly well.

Plague protocols are a pain. It would be so much more fun if we were rehearsing together in person for a live performance in front of an actual audience. Nevertheless, I am working with some of my absolute favourite people on the island and they are doing an absolutely wonderful job of bringing my characters to life.

As the director (both real and fictional), I only appear in the opening “intros” scene. After that, I am voice only during the play-within-the-play. At the last rehearsal I had to cover my mouth more than once because I was laughing out loud. Laughing at lines I had written, which I should know all too well, and yet the actor involved had put so much into their delivery that the lines were funnier than I’d ever dreamt they could be.

And that’s another fun fact.

This show is going to be hilarious.

From → Blog

  1. Donna permalink

    I love seeing the setting and the very table where this play has its roots. Honoured to be part of the resurgence!

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