Saturday, June 23, 2012

June 23 2012

Rehearsal for SDB's Firebird 2010. Photographer: Manny Rotenburg. During our summer hiatus, I decided to post some pics from the archives.

Daily Stuff - Zoot Suit rehearsal. Set the movement for a number called Marijuana Boogie. Had to talk to the director and musical director to decide what purpose the number served in the show. Unlike the other numbers in the show that move the plot forward, this number pretty much serves as a "charm" number as far as the audiences perception of it. So it was important to know why we were taking the time out of moving the story forward to sing about pot. In the end, it was decided that it was a statement about social perception about mexicans and drugs. 

Finished the Saturday Night Dance. The piece in three sections. Each section has an identical introduction, which then spins into a specific dance, which then spins into a scene. 

For the identical intros, I decided I wanted to repeat the same physical motifs every time and to just present them in different spacial relataions. That would allow the audience to pay attention to the slight variations in the sung lyric being sung by the lead upstage. Also, sometimes people are afraid of repetition. But repetition is a great tool when you are trying to get the audience to get a point. 

The first section is a swing number. Since there is so much swing dancing in the show, I wanted to differentiate it a bit (and also differentiate it from the upcoming sections). I knew that section two had to be slow and sensual, and that section three was going to be wild and fast, so I needed contrast. That being the case, the swing number ended up being very bouncy and slightly athletic. It finishes in a straddle lift.

The second section is a danzon, which (for all intents and purposes) a rhumba rhythm. Slow-Quick-Quick. It features the guys pulling the girls around them and gettting all wrapped up, finishing in a big dramatic dip (that echoes the straddle lift in the first section). 

The third section is a mambo. It was important to me that the choreography stressed the off beat. I have seen too many "mambos" staged on the down beat that it drives me crazy.

Anyhow it all ends up turning into a fight (don't all musicals about gangs) and then they dance a big finale.

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