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Blog: Exam Conditions

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Wednesday night found me back at Bally Studios for the first time in AGES, there to meet Mr S Hewitt for a practice of our new show 'Still Valid', which we will be PREMIERING next week at The Leicester Comedy Festival (tickets still VERY much available). I haven't been there for AGES - for one thing, we haven't had a show to practice for AGES, but when we HAVE needed to do stuff we tended to go to Theatre Delicatessen instead, as it was in town. HOWEVER a) we DO have something to rehearse now and b) Theatre Delicatessen have moved out to Canary Wharf, and thus we returned to Bally to find Tottenham Hale SLIGHTLY CHANGED. Not only had the studios had a lick of paint and a swap round of pictures on the wall (we used to have MOTOWN in our room, now it had changed to Early 90's American Alt ROCK) but the AREA was gradually becoming an AREA. To get to Bally you have to walk through a housing development, which was pretty much EMPTY when we first went there but now, much like my own OLYMPIC VILLAGE (where I live but don't like to go on about), was becoming an Actual Place.

There is a theory that the best way to revise for an EXAM is to do it in EXAM CONDITIONS i.e. in a large quiet room full of lots of other people, such as a LIBRARY, so that your BRANE will associate such settings with remembering the information you shoved into it there. THUS I thought it would be good for our PRACTICE if we did the same for rehearsals, so we enjoyed a very nice bottle of GHOST SHIP as we set to work. This is one of many SACRIFICES we make for our ART.

We'd had a couple of DRAMATURGICAL sessions already, where we'd sat in the pub and worked out a rough idea for how the show would work, and I'd typed the results of all this up as a guideline with bits of SCRIPT in, but we had never actually DONE it OUT LOUD before. The general idea of the show (SPOILERS) is that it's an episode of Classic Albums from 2037 covering Still Valid, which is as good an excuse as any to talk about the songs and then sing them. It all went SURPRISINGLY well - it's a simple set-up with no complicated BITS to remember (or tap dance routines) so we could pretty much skip straight to the MUCKING ABOUT stage of rehearsal, which tends to be the best bit anyway. It's not the SLICK OPERATION that, for instance, Hey Hey 16K was, and if I was starting from scratch there are definitely a couple of songs that I'd take out, but all in all it seems to work as a COHESIVE WHOLE... which is a great relief, what with us being booked to DO it a week tomorrow!

The plan is to see how it goes in Leicester and, if it's all OK, book a few more shows at the NICER Fringe Festivals and also a couple of other places. I'm secretly (not that secretly) hoping that it gets the ALBUM out to a few more people and, hey, if it takes a few nights out on the BEER with Mr Hewitt to achieve that aim, then it is a price I am prepared to pay!

posted 13/2/2017 by MJ Hibbett

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