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Geva's production of "Little Shop of Horrors" opens in about a week, and I've been to ONE rehearsal, for about 90 minutes. The bad news is I've only heard one song, watched a small part of one scene. The good news? For 90 minutes I had the privilege of watching a large team focus on perfecting four minutes of the show. Every step, every gesture, every word. Again and again. The actors would run a phrase and stop -- "again." The actors would consult with the director, the music director, the choreographer, each other, and try once more-- "again." They'd run a few bars of the song and discover a way to add more meaning or more humor-- "again." They'd turn one way, then another, make room, step back--"again." All the while cast and production members never broke their focus as the music started and the actors ran the lines and refined their movements--"again, please." I sat in awe as the team built one moment with intelligence, artistry, and discipline. Even during the break the actors retraced their steps, lips moving. Even after they nailed it--"again."
When I finally see the show I hope to lose myself in the story and the music! But on my way home, I will remember with respect and gratitude that each moment on stage is born of extraordinary effort. And the next night (and the next) they'll do it again.