Emilie (Penney Kols) muses over her life with Felix (Larry Dell).
And … YES! The cast took an enormous step forward on Wednesday night’s second run-through of the show. (Sigh of relief). Knowing that we going were into a night off for Thanksgiving and then quickly moving into tech with all the complications and challenges that adds to the process- I wanted us to have a solid run-through under our belts. The cast stepped up to the challenge and really earned their Thanksgiving turkey and pie.
I asked each of them to focus on their energy and character arcs in this run through. Each character in My Three Angels experiences a transformational process, with perhaps the exception of our villain, Henri. Some of the transformations are subtle and some are more profound. This is an interesting play in that there really isn’t a single, identifiable protagonist. Who, then, is the story REALLY about? Is it about the “Angels” or about the Ducotel family? In working through things and addressing the “structural complexities” I find in the show, I would argue the story is really about the intersections between the two units. The family is changed through the “help” and “guidance” of the unlikely Angels and Joseph, Alfred, and Jules are changed by their interactions with Felix, Marie-Louise, and Emilie.
Alfred (Dan Mueller) and Jules (Garrett Bergfeld) tend to Marie-Louise (Emily Baker) in her moment of emotional panic.
While it may seem as if the Ducotels alone benefits from the encounter, each convict experiences a deeply transformational moment that helps him to recover a sense of lost humanity or dignity. Joseph is touched by Felix’s uncorruptible honesty. Jules experiences the marriage he lost with Emilie. Alfred finds hope amidst his star-crossed encounter with Marie-Louise. The reciprocity of help is one of the most touching parts of the story.
Jules (Garrett Bergfeld), Joseph (Whit Reichert), and Alfred (Dan Mueller) offer their unconventional brand of “help” to the reluctant Paul.
The Wednesday night run-through demonstrated these crucial moments in the play MUCH more clearly. I was so pleased to see the nuances beginning to take shape here and there from a touching moment when Alfred offers Marie-Louise an exotic flower to Paul’s hilarious attempt to stand up to the Angels.
Although I would really like another full run-through before tech, travel schedules and Equity union rules will not allow for it. Instead, we will focus on continuing to cultivate the details of the show’s individual bits and pieces. It’s coming together. And, yes, it’s funny.