Opening night is just EIGHT DAYS AWAY and we are so excited to bring you Barbara Pease Weber's Foolish Fishgirls and the Pearl! As assistant director of this show, I sat down with a few members of the cast to ask for their insight on their characters and rehearsals. Meet our leading ladies: Kathy as Coral, Patti as Oceana, and Mace as Marina--with some male perspective from Dave as Floyd!
Casey: What has the most memorable part of the rehearsal process been for you thus far?
Patti: Watching a play come to life at every stage always amazes me! But I think the most memorable part of Fishgirls has been working with an incredibly gifted and caring group of people. The cast has been supportive, the directors have been nurturing and insightful, and the set designers and builders have been very creative. A project like Fishgirls builds a little community that is intimate and precious; being part of that is a sweet memory. For example, one Saturday in June, we worked for hours painting the set, laughing and sharing stories while listening to eclectic tunes.
Kathy: Yes! For me, the answer would be all the laughs we have! Rehearsing can sometimes be a tedious process between learning blocking and lines; it can be a start and stop grind. But with this cast, there are ton of laughs and we have fun while working through difficult rehearsals.
Casey: Has anything surprised you about the process?
Kathy: Being the "newbie" to the Bobcat Players, you never know if you are going to "fit in" or be accepted by the more seasoned cast members but everyone has been so wonderful. From our great director, Shelly, who took the chance on casting me, to all my fellow actors, our stage manager, and all the rest--everyone has welcomed me with smiles and it has been a great experience!
Mace: I am always surprised when the bumbling first weeks of rehearsal suddenly gel into a recognizable piece of theatre.
Patti: There is always a sense of urgency working on a play, so I always feel pressure. What has surprised me about this show is the efficiency with which it is coming together. The set is up, the props are in, and the runs are proceeding at an astonishing clip. I credit you and Shelly for organization in running rehearsals, Brandon and his crew for their continued work to create the Sea Hags bed and breakfast, and the cast for "plunging in"--if you'll excuse the seafaring pun.
Casey: What do you like most about the show?
Patti: The first time I read Fishgirls, I was charmed by its whimsy. The world of the play blends the realism of women struggling to "stay afloat" (again, pardon the pun!) in a ramshackle business with the magic of mermaids and fairy tales. It celebrates love, romance, and sisterhood; it's truly a summer night's entertainment.
Mace: I love the female focus of the show.
Casey: What do you like most about your characters?
Patti: My character, Oceana, is largely the straight character in the show. But she also is romantic and optimistic, which balances her sister Coral's biting sarcasm and no-nonsense attitude. They share that sisterly bond which is easy to relate to.
Kathy: I love the levels of my character. Like Patti said, Coral can be biting and sarcastic, but she can always be fun and sisterly, and loving and romantic. She changes throughout the play, and trying to truly represent all of her many sides is a great challenge for me.
Dave: I like that Floyd allows me to let me inner curmudgeon show through!
Mace: I love how condescending, outspoken, and vain Marina is.
Casey: What are you most excited about going forward?
Dave: I've enjoyed getting to know our newest members so far, so I look forward to continuing to do that. What's exciting is developing our chemistry onstage, because it's such a crucial part of performing.
Kathy: When I perform in a comedy like this one, I am always anxious to find out what the audience will find funny. Sometimes, you can guess it exactly, but other times, it's a complete surprise. Of course, every audience is different and they tend to laugh at different times, but it's always exciting to find out when!
Mace: I always look forward to the moment when the cast steps out on stage and all the weeks of hard work come together to create the high of a smooth-running play.
Patti: I, too, am most looking forward to opening night. It's always exciting, nerve-wracking, [and] invigorating. Having an audience for the first time reinforces why we do this. Our audiences are so loyal and supportive; they never let us down. And our playwright is coming to the show--how exciting and fortunate for us! I cannot wait to meet her.
Casey: Why do you think audiences will enjoy this show?
Patti: Firstly, it's a comedy--and our audiences love a good comedy. I think they will love these characters: two struggling sisters who have made their share of mistakes, their snobbish cousin who drips pretentiousness, a grizzled widower, a handsome young sailor, a jill of all trades, and a mesmerizing young mermaid. Each character is unique, wonderfully developed, and so much fun to play. And the story is absorbing!
Kathy: Like I mentioned before, I think the different levels our characters present are going to be fun for our audiences to watch. There are many character twists and how a character starts the show is not necessarily how they might end up! You have to come see the show to find out how--and why--they change!
Mace: It's funny! The main characters are middle-aged, like many of the audience members. It also shows not only young love, but love in later years--an idea which I think will resonate with the audience.
Dave: Simply put, Foolish Fishgirls and the Pearl is a light and whimsical show with a few plot surprises. It's perfect summer fare!
Tickets are still on sale for Foolish Fishgirls and the Pearl, running July 14, 15, 20, 21 and 22! You can purchase in person at the Hostess Gift Shoppe in Beaver or online at www.bobcatplayers.yapsody.com. You can also reserve through our box office by calling (724) 494-1680! Tickets are only $10 and all performances begin at 7:30 pm. Don't miss out on the comedy of the summer!