Theft – week 3 – music and magic and stuff

Week three saw the first rehearsal with all the cast together. What a difference it made! I could see clearly what was going on, what needed work and we managed to finish off the initial blocking for the whole of act 1.

Act 2 next week – eeep!


What else happened this week? Music happened.

There needs to be music to open the two acts and to cover the gap between scenes and one day The Pink Panther was mentioned.


Now, I love that music: all jazzy and smooth. And the chilled out vibe really suits the subtle way this play rolls along, which got me thinking.

The Pink Panther means Harry Mancini which lead me to trawl through my iTunes library. That lead to the likes of Danse Macabre and Coconut (you know, put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up). The cast agreed that the jazzy route was the way to go so I will be out trawling again… possibly Caro Emerald???


What also happened this week is that the very enterprising JHL has already sold a bunch of tickets!


Bums on seats – yay!



Theft – week 2 – it’s the little things

Thank goodness that first week is over!

The first week is always awkward – we’ve got words, we’ve got people (not everyone knows everyone), we’ve got piles of wood and paint, none of it in context … it’s all a bit bleh!


This week – week 2 – we’ve now got some basic blocking done, we’ve talked about characters, we know the basic layout of the set – all of which feeds the creative process and gives the actors something to think about. And it was pretty obvious that they’d been thinkin’! The ideas were flowing. They’ve also been talking amongst themselves and are getting on like a house on fire – all good stuff.


The set? The set is going to be amazing, the people designing and building it are a couple and the both have a real eye for detail and period correctness. The script calls for bookcase that hides a safe and a small cupboard which is large enough to hide a man (the man, MC, who has to fit in it is tall!). It is set in the mid 1990s but the house is meant to be an old country residence so it will be old structure with 90s decor. I am very excited to see it!

We only have a small stage so certain compromises need to be made – like, for example, the script calls for 2 doors but we can’t really fit 2 doors in along with the book cases, the cupboard, the fireplace and side board. Practically speaking we only need one, so one door it is.

squeezing in

I’ve started making a list of props – I’ve done act 1, only act 2 to go which should be done by the end of the week.

In other words, it is all coming along nicely; it still looks like nothing at all but it isn’t meant to 😀

right direction



Theft – week 1 – I regret nothing

There is little that is more rewarding than watching actors, with a little direction and guidance, swim after you mercilessly push them in the deep end.

Yes, it’s a bit sadistic, perhaps, but it is by far the best and quickest way of working out what your dealing with in terms of ability and experience, and they learn straight away what you are all about as well.


Monday was the very first rehearsal and I was two actors down due to family summer holidays, and they happen to be the two out of the five actors in my cast that I had worked with before as a director. Of the three I had at rehearsal I had worked with CB as a fellow actor, so I know him,  but I have never directed him.

Anyway, I briefly told them about characters and set and then shoved them up on the stage and we spent the evening briefly blocking the first seven pages.

Let me tell you, I was impressed, they took direction like champs, did what I asked, grasped it all, and did me proud.

In short: dey da boss!




Theft – week 0.5 – hours to go until rehearsals start

I’m not kidding, there are only 28 hours until rehearsals start and I don’t know about the cast but I CANNOT WAIT to get started.

I was pretty damn excited at the casting read through all the way back in May. It all went a bit dormant until about a fortnight ago when I sat down and properly compiled thoughts about characters traits and development, set requirements, costumes, themes that run through the play – all the stuff that makes directing  a play so much FUN!

And now? Now I’m raring to go. Roll on Monday!

She's from the same state as me. Heck, she's from a city pretty close by. How was I not blessed with her nerdy cuteness?

But enough with the excitement, on to the important stuff!

What is Theft? It is a comedy by a very clever bloke called Eric Chappell. Here’s a summary:

Imagine returning from a pleasant anniversary celebration with your oldest friends to find that your house has been burgled. The burglar is still in the house and has you convinced, for a while, that he is, a policeman investigating the break-in. Once his true identity is known, the burglar reveals that he knows all kinds of uncomfortable truths about you, your spouse and your friends. That burglar is none other than Spriggs, who succeeds in turning your world upside down with his own brand of subversive observation.

What else can I tell you? The poster has been commissioned from a friend of a friend, a very talented lady, I am looking forward to seeing what she comes up with.

And finally, who’s the cast?

Trevor – CB

John – SR

Jenny – JHL

Barbara – CR

Spriggs – MC

Not to mention the crew:

Director – moi

Stage Manager – GC

Set/costume design – BG

Set builder – JG

Lights/sound – PF

You have no idea who these people are but let me tell you a more enthusiastic and hard working bunch you aren’t likely to find!

I am directing this play for a fabulous little group called Cowbridge Amateur Dramatic Society (CADS). Here’s the Facebook page and the website for more details:

I’ve already got the play opening worked out in my head and I am so looking forward to seeing if it actually works in reality on Monday. I will let you know how I get on :-D.