ERIK
REHEARSALS


The calendar rehearsal runs over a wide period of time, lasting over a year, until the day before the debut (for information, go to DEBUT: ABSOLUTE WORLD PREMIERE).

The works were preceded by the celebration of a ritual aimed at the formation of an EGRÉGOROS aimed at supporting the theatrical project.

Then the preparation of the performance began (conceived and conducted with the usual obsessive perfectionism by the director), divided into 24 successive phases, of which we offer a constant update here below.

  1. Following the presentation of the dramaturgy (with the first recommendations and reflections) and the assignment of roles, the first phase (February-April 2019) began with the drafting of a report — by each individual actor — containing the analysis of the text and, in a particular way, of one’s character. The director, after having carefully analyzed each report, discussed it with the actors in order to enter into more detail on the merits, taking the opportunity to deepen the director’s conception of the Play, with particular attention to the overall acting approach (focusing in particular on the importance of CORALITY, in the precise choice of creating a performance where all the actors compete together for the success of the representation, in a common horizon of responsibility, without distinction between “main” and “secondary” roles: the latter must not exist — a true actor knows how to make any characterization special, even if limited to a few lines, and individual (providing useful indications for the development of each character), stylistic (the AURATICaspect, in particular; the dimension of simultaneity; the “poetry in space”), aesthetic choices (including costumes and scenery) and other related details.
  • During the entire month of April the director held a workshop aimed at preparing the actors to deepen the work on physical actions (as well as some in-depth meetings on iambic pentameter and endecasillabo) which will be the core of the directional setting of the performance.
  1. Immediately after (May 2019), the first reading of Sri Aurobindo’s lyrical drama was performed, both in the original English (under the constant supervision of a teacher of native speaker, who was asked to verify the pronunciation of the actors, in order to make it impeccably British) and in the Italian translation.
  2. The third phase (April-May) led to the identification, by each actor, of the “main center of consciousness” that animates his character. Once well established for each actor, a series of psychophysical exercises were performed to make it organic and spontaneous.
  3. Therefore, as a natural consequence, an “archetypal position” has been identified, considered the starting point for character development. The archetypal position and the work on the character's center of consciousness constitute what our director considers the root of the character, which of course will remain hidden from the viewer’s eyes, but from which the whole development of the tree will draw the necessary vital nourishment.
  4. Then, starting from this archetypal position, a long training began in which each actor started moving in space and interacting with the others, getting used to maintaining the aforementioned prerogatives. Technical terms such as “impulse”, “center of consciousness”, “archetypal position”, “trusted companion” have gradually become operational in everyone and all this makes possible the further advancement of the preparation of the representation.
  5. At this point in the preparatory work, each actor underwent a regular exercise aimed at learning to “radiate” the consciousness of his character, fulfilling the creative tasks required by the performance of the scenic action.
  6. The next phase consisted in a deepening of the “tempo-rhythm”, in particular by playing on the contrasts between external time-rhythm and inner time-rhythm (as well as between the various modes of external time-rhythm, for example imagining to dissect the body in two segments — the part of the lower trunk and the upper one, as well as the left and right sides — practicing in giving each of the two parts a different tempo-rhythm), until arriving, with a slow and scrupulous adaptation work, to tune all the individual scans in a single overall harmony.
  7. At this point, the process of general basting of the drama scenes began, through a series of improvisations aimed at setting the intertwining of the action, working on the various beats contained in the individual scenes. In practice, each scene has been subdivided into small rhythmic-thematic units (sometimes even 50 or even more), so as to be able to fully elaborate them, to then unify the entire scene in a well-balanced and complete whole.
  8. The next phase (or, to be more precise, concomitant) saw the actors involved in physical exercises aimed at a deepening of the events preceding the action object of the drama.
  9. With the tenth phase the work enters a stage of maturity, explicating itself in the elaboration of an embryonic “score of physical actions”.
  10. Expanding, refining and specifying the above-mentioned score of physical actions was the next task undertaken (the duration of which includes a particularly wide period of time), through an expenditure of energy and an unqualified prodigality.
  11. Little by little, the opposite process has also begun, consisting in drying the score of physical actions, so as to free it of the superfluous and lead it to the essential truth, strengthening organic unity and consequentiality, avoiding any recourse to a pedestrian realism.
  12. Only at this point was allowed to approach the poetic text (so far it has been worked with its own, prose words, following the organic lines of the scenic action), first of all practicing with care on the musicality of each single verse, of each passage, of each dialogue or monologue and, finally, after repeated reading tests in which the director has led the actors towards the appropriate metric scan, the right rhythmic progression, the most adequate expressive naturalness and the most suasive correspondence between the poetic text and physical action (between “poetry of the text” and “poetry of the body”) — to send it to memory.
  13. Beginning in September, the work began on convergence between the score of physical actions (body poetry) and the text of the drama (dramatic poetry).
  14. The elaboration of the actual staging has therefore begun to come to light in an ever more detailed and precise way; the work has increasingly focused on its improvement — both individually and at a choral level.
  15. All the previous work, aimed at the internal characterization (whole days of long and diligent labour have been devoted to the deepening of every single scene, with an unimaginable meticulousness for those who have not experienced the rehearsal from within), led to their external characterization, which came about as spontaneously as possible, without having to resort to stereotypes or the so-called “tricks of the trade”.
  16. A necessary incubation phase has become necessary at this point, aimed at assimilating what has been achieved so far. The theatrical rehearsals of the first eight months, moreover, have involved a really remarkable textual deepening and so special to be able to define it without any redundancy as exceptional (the theatrical dramaturgies, as it is known among the experts, are really understood in all their nuances only by putting them on stage), so that the translator (who is also the director of this performance), as a refined poet as he is, felt the need to perfect his translation (in hendecasyllables) in order to make it more and more adherent to the original, both as regards its specifically poetic beauty, and from the point of view of scenic rendering. However, it is necessary her to specify that in English-speaking theaters the text used will be the original English one, given that the theater company is made up of bilingual actors.
  17. January 2020 opens the final stages of the rehearsals, starting from the elaboration of all the details so far neglected, until the fine-tuning of each scenic element, so as to best compete with the overall unit.
  18. At this point the finishing of the staging is based on the last touches of the brush.
  19. The complete trials of the performance begin, for the moment still almost completely devoid of technical elements.
  20. The actors, who for several months have begun to get used to their respective costumes (making them their “second skin”), now begin to become familiar even with the scenic installations. At this very advanced stage of the work, we have offered an “open trial” for the most generous donors, as well as for some experts, in order to have a first response: great appreciation from all of them, along with some valuable stimulus to further improve the representation.
  • The ministerial decree imposed by the Italian government as a result of the coronavirus obliged our company to carry out a forced break, which we used to better settle everything processed so far.