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Murder For Two Rehearsal Diary: Week Three

Assistant Director Chloe France takes us through the last week of rehearsals for the British premiere of Murder For Two.

In any rehearsal process the heat is on in the closing stages. To safeguard against Ed and Jeremy combusting we have been engaging in weekly rounds of ‘forced fun’. The fun this week took the form of an early Burns Night celebration. When actual Burns Night rolls around next week we will be deep into the heart of tech. And so we gathered prematurely at the Actors Cottage where our resident Scot, Ailsa Bonner, had whipped up a feast of sausages, haggis (including an alternative version for those brave souls undertaking ‘Veganuary’), wine and whisky. Meat was consumed, toasts were made and the following morning we rounded it all off with a mini Ceilidh to warm up before rehearsal.

The final week in the rehearsal room looks ahead to the next phase: the stage. Amongst other deadlines the third week is crunch time on the prop and costume front. Designer Gabriella and our stage management team, along with wardrobe wonders Amanda and Eloise, have delivered us a stream of carefully designed paper props (book covers/ police paperwork/ mugshots), retro cafetieres and carefully distressed three piece suits. Trying out props and costumes in the rehearsal room is vital because once the set is installed in the theatre on Sunday and Monday the tech rehearsal, aka the race to the finish line that is the first preview, will begin.

The final week also heralds the  opening of the rehearsal room doors to our fellow creatives who will bring the show to the stage during tech week: designer Gabriella, lighting designer Chris Withers and co-sound designer Michael Livermore came to watch us piece the full show together. We have also welcomed the wider Watermill staff in: because it’s always useful to have a friendly face, an audible cackle and a bunch of new recruits to practice some audience participation with. As we move through tech and dress rehearsals towards previews the show we have nurtured in the rehearsal room will really take flight. Murder For Two is an uplifting dollop of American murder mystery and an ideal counterpoint to new year despair. So come and join us for a good old whodunnit.

Chloe France