Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Old Script

No matter how much I try I can't get myself to use the new Friends Like These script. I actually printed out the newest version, something I haven't done for the previous two remounts of the play. The new version with re-writes incorporated into the script, the intermission removed and all the other changes neatly typed in placed was hole-punched and placed into a new black spiral notebook, but I can't bring myself to switch to it. I like my old one, the changes are written in pencil, it has three generations of set changes, and lighting and sound cue notes written in the margins, it has names of original cast members, understudies, and now new cast members scribbled on blank pages. It's somewhat like my security blanket, with that script I know the show, I feel safe and at home, I know each page, I know exactly where each cue is written. It's the difference between a brand new book and one that has been read so many times it's dog-eared and creased. Both tell the same story, but one feels more comfortable, more lived in, more read, more loved.

I went to rehearsal tonight fully intending to use the clean new script, to write in new cues, get rid of the clutter of the old generations of this show, but I just couldn't do it. It felt like I was cheating or ignoring the history and the past lives of the production. And so after a few seconds I made the decision that the shiny new script in the new black spiral notebook will not be accompanying me to New York next weekend, I will be carrying the old one, the one with loose pages due to the holes wearing out, the one with all the pencil marks and re-writes written in above and below other lines, the one in the familiar light blue notebook with the blue and purple post-notes sticking out to mark the sound and light cues, the one that reminds me in big capital letters to "WAIT FOR BRIAN" so that I never again cut him out of the last part of a scene, that's the one that will fly to NY, that is the script that will go to the theater and that is the script that will watch the last five performances of this show. It seems fitting, this script and I started this journey together, it seems appropriate that we should get to finish it together.

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