Lynn Whitehead over saw our Bring on the men rehearsal today to make sure everything ran smoothly and to offer her assistance and direction if needed.
This is the witness statement Lynn wrote summarising todays rehearsal from her point of view:
Witness statement 18th May 2017
Rehearsal for ‘Bring on the Men’ song/dance number for ‘Saints and Sinners’
1.15 – 2.30 Room EO44
Dancers: Chloe Gilbert, Zoe Mills, Faye Radford, Vicky Wilson, Jess Last, Sophia Lerigo
Waitresses: Beth Easdown, Emma Croft, Sian Davis
Assistant: Daytona Florian
Staff: Sarah Berrington, Lynn Whitehead
The first run through was slightly chaotic – no-one was quite ready to concentrate and it fell apart slightly. Daytona gave some notes about timing of the singing and open-positioning of the dancers’ chairs.
Then the group ran through just to listen to the track as the timing is quite difficult. At this first run- through Jess and Faye backed Emma singing on the first verse and Beth kept time on the most difficult part of the song as it’s a pre-recorded backing track with several rallentando and accelerando sections.
Before the second run through, Zoe and Chloe and a couple of the others went to collect the dance skirts which everyone felt would help the characterisation of the dancers. Meanwhile Emma, Beth and Sian worked on the singing of the opening of the verses. Daytona went to fetch the completed scripts to give out.
Staff gave some notes about characterisation – the waitresses needed to react to each other as they sang their separate parts and the dancers needed to let their faces show character as well as their movements. There was discussion about what the attitude of the whole group should be towards the other characters on stage (for example the ‘Posh’ boys’ group) and how that could be expressed. Sarah talked quickly through the dance moves in order to clarify some things that were still unsure:- a cross-over point that only Chloe had remembered and a section for Jess as she had missed an earlier rehearsal.
The timing was much more accurate on this run.
On the third run, Emma sang solo and pitched well on her verse so felt confident to do it without back up. We talked briefly about ‘talk-singing’ the first phrases and tried it out, but Emma preferred to go for singing it. Sian tripped up on a couple of the words for her verse but found herself back quickly and on time. Beth stomped out the tricky timing to bring everyone in on time.
The dancing was more character driven and it made the piece more confident and interesting to watch. Vicky and Sophia could both do a little more to look like they’re teasing the audience and enjoying it which will ensure that any glitches on timing are not the most noticeable thing.
The dancers sorted out the positioning of their feet in the leaning-line close to the end of the song and everyone sang out boldly on the final note.
Lynn suggested that Beth should actually clap out the difficult rhythm ‘flamenco’ style to help the group keep together.