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Blog: The Tech Rehearsal

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After three long days basically sat in bed I emerged from the flat on Wednesday and headed into town. My first taste of The Outside World was a bit strange - had it ALWAYS been this wet? I'm pretty sure I hadn't lived underwater before being poorly, had I?

My first port of call was a meeting with Mr J Dredge which was, as ever, EXCELLENT and full of schemes and LARFS. I'd intended to then go for a bit of a wander round comic shops and so forth but still felt a bit FEEBLE so instead had a) a cup of tea in Pret nearby then b) a COKE in a pub in Islington (where I forgot the golden rule of buying soft drinks in pubs i.e. say "no ice!" or you're basically paying DOUBLE) before heading to The Hen & Chickens for the TECH REHEARSAL of London Calling, the SHOW what my Writers' Group (oh yes) have done.

To be honest I am pretty much RIDDLED with guilt about this show. A LOT of work has been going on by my lot over the past few weeks while I was SWANNING ABOUT up in Scotland and then THIS week, when I'd hoped to at least show my face and CARRY things a bit, I have been almost entirely in BED. Thus I was very grateful to have an ALLEN KEY thrust into my hand almost as soon as I arrived and be able to start putting together Bar Stools and then, when that was done, get a screwdriver and GO AT at a very very delapidated ironing board and try to make it stand up again. It felt good to be DOING something, though I was also very glad that I'd brought a clean shirt with me as I got a RIGHT old sweat on!

There then followed the Tech Rehearsal itself. This is when they go through the show with the technician, sorting out all the lighting cues, sound cues, and PROPS. I have just come from a fortnight of shows where the cues are as follows: "1) LIGHTS ON 2) LIGHTS OFF (OPTIONAL)" so I was stunned by how much was going on. It was DAZZLING, to be honest, a right proper use of all the Theatrical Elements for a fully fledged THING. Also there were GAGS and DANCING and all sorts, it looked brilliant!

Afterwards everyone else looked a bit worried and/or unsure, almost as if they'd spent several weeks working on it rather having just rolled up to go "OOH! LIGHTS!" I tried to say that it ALWAYS feels like this, that the tech run IS just a tech run, that it always feels like everything's going to fall apart just before you start and that, within five hours everything would feel BRILLIANT but, like saying "Don't worry!" to someone who is worried, it never really helps.

So instead of doing too much of that I said my farewells and headed home. I did have a ticket for that evening's show but I was EXTREMELY aware that I was by no means at full health and that I had more performances of Hey Hey 16K to get through at the weekend, so thought that going home was the wisest course of action. I'm going to see the final night on Sunday, so hopefully I will be at PEAK FITNESS by then!

Tickets for both shows, by the way, are VERY MUCH available. "London Calling" is on at The Hen & Chickens every night at 7:30pm until Sunday 30 August and you can buy tickets HERE. "Hey Hey 16K", meanwhile is on at The Camden Head at 6:30pm on Friday 28 and Saturday 29 August and you can buy tickets here. Two shows on in London town at the same time? This must be how Andrew Lloyd Webber feels!

posted 27/8/2015 by MJ Hibbett

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