Avenue Q: Blog 2



Time is passing really quickly and we’re now only four and a half months away for opening Avenue Q in Aberdeen’s Arts Centre. Now the tickets are on sale it is all becoming a bit more real and the realisation is starting to hit me that this is actually going to happen.
My biggest concern at this point is definitely the lines. It’s not a dialogue heavy show as it relies on the songs to tell some of the story and add the extra humour but even then I’m not the best at remembering things. In the band I always had the music or lyrics in front of me because I often drifted off during gigs – while the floor was dancing I was thinking about anything else from what I was doing tomorrow to asking myself if I would pop in to Tesco on the way home from the gig. Those folders of dots and words saved me many nights, but I really don’t have that luxury this time as I need to provide cues for other people in the cast and can’t drift off.
I don’t know if it is age or something else but I do struggle to remember things more and more these days and the thought of learning a whole script effectively is frightening me…a lot! I find it easier to remember tags in situ rather than coldly from the page, so if we are running through the scene I can associate it with where I am and what’s happening. Reading on my own at home is no use and I struggle to relay the lines in that way. Our esteemed director (that’s a tenner you owe me Mearns) has said we will do a full run through without scripts towards the end of next month and I haven’t gotten close to it yet.
With the lines it is not about letting people down and keeping the pace up – for me there is nothing worse than a comedy play or musical that doesn’t maintain a consistent pace to keep the audience interested. At least if it were the band or on my own I could say something to fill the silence but in this you can’t improvise or others will lose their cues and points of reference. At the same time I know that I can work really well under pressure so the closer the script-less run through gets the more I am likely to retain.
We have seen some of the set and it looks great but I can’t wait to meet my alter-ego Nicky in Puppet form so I can start focussing on the physical element of the performance as that’s the part I’m eager to do. I think partly I was drawn to the show because I’m hiding behind the character in every sense during the show and it won’t be “me” up there, it’ll be Nicky. For my first acting performance in 14 years I don’t really know if me front and centre would be a very comfortable place.
Tonight’s rehearsal is the first for a couple of weeks because other cast members have been performing in other shows like Spelling Bee and Ordinary Days so it will be good to have the majority of the cast back together again. As the old saying gies I hope I “remember my lines and not trip over anything!”

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