No rain today - and no traffic on Osborn - yea!
Tonight was what we call "table work." We went through Act 1 line by line, making sure that the actors understood why every word was being said. There's a lot of deception in the dialogue - so we followed up many of the line reads with - "Does he believe that, or is he just saying it?" or "Is she telling the truth there or hiding something from him?" We are finding a few inconsistencies, which may be due to the translation from Hebrew to English. At one point Zvi uses the phrase "pull your chestnuts out of the fire." Not a very common phrase, for sure. I wonder what it was in Hebrew - or it would probably be very colorful in Yiddish! And there are a few grammatical problems. The script has Zvi say the word "hung" referring to a person, so we're gong to get the okay to change that to "hanged" - little things like that. Fortunately, the playwright, Motti Lerner, has made himself very accessible to us, so we'll make a list and send it to him for his approval.
I had been bothered by the fact that it refers to the fact that Hannah asked for the divorce, when I had always thought that only the man could initiate a divorce. I brought in my "Jewish Book of Why" - Volumes 1 and 2! And sure enough, there are circumstances under which a woman can appeal the Rabbinic court to compel the man to grant her a divorce. I should have known - there's never just ONE answer to a Jewish question!
I Googled some images from Mea Shearim, the Orthodox area where Hannah lives, and found a great sign that I'd like on the set - but the image is slanted slightly. Good news is that Ariana, our assistant stage manager, has a photo shop geek friend who says it's an easy fix! I've already e-mailed the image to her - so keep your fingers crossed for us. It will add such a lovely realistic image to the set!
We were scheduled from 6-11 tonight, but this kind of scrutiny is pretty wearing - about 10:15, I started to fade - and Eric was quick to say he was too. So we wrapped things up. We had made it through Act 1, which was my goal anyway.
Another great rehearsal!
And so it goes