An Actor's Perspective - Rehearsals Begin

Jennifer Kuzmeskas

  • OnStage Massachusetts Columnist

The week is FINALLY here, the week rehearsals are finally going to begin.  The audition process is over, the cast list has been posted all over social media, everyone has said how excited they are to get started, the rest of summer has been enjoyed by all and it’s time. It’s time for that first meet and greet. I am one that takes the summer off from being in a show.  I spend the time with friends and family and I enjoy some other interests and hobbies in life. But, when the time comes, I am more than ready to jump back into a show.  

There are many things I look forward to when getting back into a show. I am not even sure I could tell you about all of them here. Number one on that list I look forward to is, seeing old friends and number two is meeting new friends.  After perusing the cast list for this show it’s a pretty even mix of both. I am even lucky enough to have a small world story unfolding. There is a woman I used to work with many years ago, that hasn’t done theatre in years whom auditioned and was cast.  I am very excited to be catching up with her in this process.  But I digress, there is no better feeling than walking into a room of people who will come together and be a family, at least for the duration of the show.  

The amazing thing about community theatre and especially this group is the family mentality. Often if you are new to a group and really don’t know anyone, you might feel like the outsider at first.  Everyone is hugging and saying hi and catching up, but you don’t know any of them yet.  This group though, welcomes the new and returning in the same way, with open arms.

There is a welcoming air in the room that cannot be explained, but is comforting.   

As rehearsal starts there are the usual pleasantries, usually a description of what to expect at rehearsals from the Director and Music Director, maybe some paperwork that might be passed out. You might even go around the room so everyone can learn each other’s name and what parts they are playing. Then comes the first time that you all get to sing together. That first time everyone sings together is always a special moment. You get to hear the beginnings of what will come and you already start thinking about what it will be like come performance time.  

For me theatre is an escape and having that escape is the third thing I look forward to. I can honestly say I have enjoyed my summer. I have spent time with friends and family, I have seen some shows, spent some time on the beach, went swimming and enjoyed wearing sandals and shorts everywhere I went. Now though, it’s time to escape from everyday life, a couple of nights a week for a few hours and go join another world, a world completely different from my every day. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my everyday life too. My other half is the center of my world and if I loved him anymore I would bust, my family is the best family I could have ever asked for, I have some of the best friends on the planet, but like everyone else there are trials and tribulations in life, it’s not always smooth sailing. So for a short period of time I get to escape those trials and tribulations and join a fictional world and be someone besides myself. 
Those of you reading this who have done community theatre before, I know, I have only scratched the surface of all that comes with starting down a new path toward another performance. I am confident all those feelings will come out in future posts though. It’s a long rehearsal process and though I am painting a pretty rainbow, or yellow brick road, if you will, like anything else there will be poppies, flying monkeys and many other challenges to overcome.  

Right now though, I am anticipating the fun, excitement and enthusiasm that all comes with that first rehearsal. Knowing that all those old and new friends will become family for a few months. Then at the end of our journey together we will get to share our love and passion for what we have created with an audience.  

Oh, and no, for the record, I am not doing Wizard of Oz. 

Photo: Delaware Theatre Company