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      CALENDAR GIRLS, the play, is in full rehearsal. I often think I'm going to journal the process of producing a play from its inception until after it closes, but I have never managed to pull it off. By “from its inception” I mean way back when the idea of the play first comes to mind. Of course many plays come into my mind as possible plays for HG to produce, so to write about all of them would mean doing nothing else. So maybe beginning when the Artistic Planning Committee decides that yes this is a play that HG should do.

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      There are a number of great playwrights whom we have not featured in our quarter century of productions. Perhaps surprisingly we have never worked with Tennessee Williams, Eugene O'Neil, and that fellow who wrote The Odd Couple, Moliere, Mamet, Chekov (well, does VANYA AND SONYA AND MASHA AND SPIKE count?)We have produced Shakespeare—a number of his—and...others.     And now we can add Noel Coward to our list.

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      I sat in on a rehearsal of Blithe Spirit last night.  Clare Ritter, who is directing this one, headed up the Women's Project "What She Wrote" original play writing and producing last year.  I worked with her on that, and I'm very interested in what Blythe Spirit looks like two and a half weeks before opening night.  It is a full-length, main stage Hamilton-
      Gibson production.

      So, why would I want to attend a rehearsal on March 26th for a play that opens April 13th?  Because I have always loved the process as much as the end result, the journey as much as the actual arrival at the destination, in "real life" as in theatre.  So, yes, I really love rehearsals where I learn a lot and am often frustrated, and I work with actors and directors who challenge me and help me along the way.  I have been fortunate to be cast in probably a dozen HG main stage productions, and some of my fondest (and often funniest) memories are of rehearsals.

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      Johnny Cash's birthday today . I bet you didn't know that. Yep, born in 1932 out in Arkansas, the fourth of seven children.

      As sometimes happens when we're pl anning a season, I'm either not familiar with or fond of a particular show, but for various reasons I either suggest or go along with a suggestion. When a committee decides anything there is rarely consensus, but there does need to exist a trust and that wonderful base of all good improv work—in theatre and in life--”Yes...and...” This provides the open door to proceed and see what great things might happen, outside of the realm of our own limited imagination.

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