Saturday, April 2, 2011

Gimme A Cold One! -- Script, That Is!

Who knew the present could meet up with the 1500s? Angela and I did, or at least we hoped it was possible. We were right!
It happened April 2nd when nine actors, ranging in age from 10 to 60-ish, met at Angela's house.
Their mission? They thought it was to participate in a cold reading of a new stage play, but were pleased to learn it was a table reading of our screenplay adaptation of GREEN DARKNESS - at first glance, they liked our revised title. Good sign...
Angela delegated the major rolls - she chose well by having professional actor Derek McGrath read the dual role of our protagonist in present and in past.
Minor roles fell where they may - the 10-year-old boy read well, including one word ("whore") his father was going to explain to him on the drive home. Many of the minor parts were doubled up. Angela even marked all the scripts, highliting the appropriate role for each actor. That really helped to decrease the confusion.
With all the action/description being read aloud, too, the event took almost two and a half hours to complete. (That included the failure of the camera, crash of my Skype connection, leaving me looking at a blue screen of warnings! Time to get my CPU worked on. From then on, I listened in via speaker phone.) Through it all, Angela did well - she resisted both speaking and adding sound effects.
At times the one actress mixed up an American southern accent with an English accent - and made it work! That character may now become an American from the south in our script.
Angela got a little teary-eyed at the climax. That's a very good thing. Other positive comments overheard included experiencing goosebumps at various stages as well as the climax and needing to resist turning the page, before everyone else, to see what would happen next.
Spontaneous applause signalled the end of the reading - praise for the people and the material. And the pizza's arrival.
Yes, we have a few things to consider as we tweak the script just a 'little' more. The decision was unanimous that we had hit the genre bull's-eye. McGrath took his copy home to read again, promising to email further feedback.
Was the reading worth the hostess' jitters? Definitely.
Now on to the next step~~

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