Each week, our #StageDoorLive News Writer / Researcher Hillary Dziminski chronicles her interaction with the news of the week. Some of it that made it to the show, and other bits that didn’t… but they matter damn it. Watch the news that did make it in #StageDoorLive Episode Four.
Good morning! Afternoon? Evening? I don’t know.
What day is it? Does anyone even care anymore?
Let’s jump straight in.
870 kiddos submitted their isolation art for last month’s Irish Times isolation art competition; winners were selected by Irish national treasure Don Conroy. (Shout out to my friend Hannah Mamalis, Don’s Number One Fan.)
There are some truly excellent submissions on display if you click the link above; the winning piece, called ‘Wild Imagination’ by James Moonan, is fantastic, but this submission from Isabelle McCabe-Bushe is suuuper relatable. She says, “My self-portrait is about how I feel sad and worried. The splats of paint are my worries.”
I get it. I get it.
Proposed alternate title: U Ok Hun?
Full disclosure, I haven’t watched Normal People yet. This is because I am 100% not ready for the complete emotional decimation that I know is in store. Y’all, I’m fragile. I cannot cope with reliving my teenage romantic misadventures right now.
BUT. Even without having seen it, I can still appreciate this article. Being a young, single person who is interested in both love and sex, I can confirm that the “dating” scene here in Ireland can be…….complex. So seeing such largely positive responses to Normal People’s sexual content is really refreshing. And even though there has been some less than favourable feedback, I can’t complain, because that feedback has made this truly excellent video possible.
May we never forget this iconic intro on #LiveLine this week…
— Ste Murray (@murray_ste) May 2, 2020
From the bottom of my cold, dead heart — thank you for this, Ste. Thank you.
In the interest of transparency, I feel like I have to say that my Star Wars viewing experience is limited to one drunken college screening of Mystery Science Theatre 3000: Attack of the Clones and the new one with Emilia Clarke.
But this must be news for some people, so…live long and prosper?
(Please don’t @ me, I know that’s a Star Trek reference, I don’t live in a cave.)
Now to take a line from Prez Trump’s book, I’m not a doctor, so I can’t really decide if I think reopening cinemas as early as mid-July is a good shout or not. And frankly, I’m really tired of thinking about Covid and social distancing and this messed up timeline we’re all living in, so all I have to say about this headline is: if cinemas don’t reopen for the premiere of Disney’s live-action Mulan…can we please get it released straight to Disney+? I need something to live for. Thanks.
Okay, I’m going to leave you on a more serious note here.
Like many of my fellow makers, I should be in the middle of a show run right now. Just before the lockdown, I was putting the final touches on our marketing materials, organizing a rehearsal schedule, and liaising with the coordinators of Phizzfest, the festival in which our new Corps Ensemble show would have premiered.
In an alternate, non-apocalyptic timeline, today would be busy busy busy. I’d be in the Bohemian early to make sure our tech desk was operating normally, setting up my box office, triple checking the comps list, tidying up the chairs, and lighting the candles. But in this timeline, I’m not doing any of those things.
It’s 10:40 AM, I’m still in my pajamas, and I’m trying not to cry because a friend of mine, who’s inside of my new 5km radius, might cycle past my house later for a socially distant ‘hello’.
He’ll be the first of my friends that I’ve seen in 3-D for over 2 months.
We will not hug.
In my experience, theatre people tend to have very few physical boundaries. We think nothing of changing clothes in front of one another, we kiss frequently, and cuddle often. We hold hands. My observations have led me to conclude that the clingier the makers, the better the work.
Sometimes I see a production that feels disconnected and I think, they probably don’t hug each other enough.
The physical closeness that comes with a rehearsal process is, I think, a key ingredient to a good show. If you can’t be comfortable in close physical proximity to your stagemates, how can you be comfortable sharing that part of your soul that you give away freely in every performance? Our bodies and the sharing of our bodies with others is a sacred thing, and we theatre people may know that better than anyone. Performing is as much a physical exchange as it is an emotional one, and performance without either element is hollow.
I can’t fathom being in the room with my family — because that’s what my company is: a family — and not hug them.
Anyway. That’s what’s been on my mind this week.
Things are hard just now, but just think how sweet that first friend hug will be.