In Melbourne with Lipsynch Part 2
Friday 3 August 2012:
Discussion about Oz way of saying ‘break a leg’. Apparently it's “chookas”, the history of which is that in Australian theatres before the curtain was up, the actors would peek through the curtain to see how the audience was and if it was full, then they would eat well that night, possibly even eat “chookie” or chicken. Thus the word. Sounds like our 'chockers' for the house being full. I wonder which word came first?
Running through the rehearsal, there are still some surprises with at least one scene re-written by the actors and Robert in the interim 14 months. Enough to keep us on our toes. Also it subtly changes the information the audience receives so it'll be interesting to see how the audience reacts.
Before the show opens, we enact our own version of a collective group ‘merde!’ which involves Russian phrases learned in Moscow mixed with ‘Chocolat’ and much stamping of actors and stage management team. Very tribal.
First show receives an instantaneous standing ovation, never before seen in the State Theatre here in Melbourne Arts Centre so we must be doing something right. I think the show always goes down well in an Anglophone country, with a shared sense of humour, and Oz irreverence appreciating the quirkier elements in the show. Very warm audience who seem to have enjoyed their day with us. During the coming week we have a number of meetings with Melbourne theatre industry bods who are interested in Robert's process of creating theatre.