Dracula Diaries, week2.1

Dear Backers

As we roll in to the second week of rehearsals I feel that cast are really beginning to get a feel for the characters they are playing. It great to see the play coming to life. I find it interesting that more of the cast are writing their diaries in character this week, they are beginning to live the people! Even poor mad Renfield!

The pace and speed of the play are really building, with the fast scenes beginning to flow. I know this will continue, and the end result will be an audience caught up in the middle of an unrelenting series of events that build in horror!

For me some of the best moments this week so far have been when Lucy begins playing with those around her as her inhuman powers grow; the chilling laughter of the vampire brides, and the pain and confusion on Mina and Jonathan! Heady stuff indeed!

Our web site problems continue, which I am still working to resolve, but despite this our tickets are selling fast, so please book soon! Thecantingcrew.com is when you can reserve them.


The Crew at work.

Kimberly Black (playing Florrie)

We’re up! Books down and on our feet.
This is tough. I’m liking it though. I feel like I’m really getting to know the house, garden and rooms where Florrie works. I’m growing into her body and finding how she moves.
I can honestly say I am exhausted already and its not Friday yet. Its not just talking as this person thinking as this person, its living as this person and you forget how physically draining it is.


I feel like last week was a warm up to this crazy explosion of hardcore rehearsing. Everything has gone so well but I found myself in a little dip today…..onwards and upwards Florrie me girl, you ain’t gonna be defeated!


Arthur Seward (played by Wayne Burke)

My dear Lucy…my dear dear Lucy. I never knew I could feel, truly feel until It was too late. I feel something fermenting inside, building and cascading out of control. It grasps me from the inside and controls my every action. Moments pass and I don’t know where they went… Whole days pass and i dont know that I am searching, burying myself in my work and grasping for dear life. Sea bathing, riding …when we walked for hours lost in each other. But now it is changed. It holds me a step away from darkness. Not close enough to touch it but … I will…I will.


Michael Brady playing Van Helsing

I’m concentrating at the moment on really making sure my responses are conversational and not in any way sounding contrived. So I’m really thinking about what has taken place just before Van Helsing says something. So at the start of scene 4 I am responding to Arthur’s worries that he hasn’t been doing enough for Lucy. I’m finding this is helping me put a real context to what my character is saying and also helping me develop a more natural tone to conversations I’m having with others.

I’m also trying to develop a more dark and eccentric side to his character. To begin with I saw Van Helsing as a profoundly gentle and warm character who visibly and physically reached out to the other characters and their dilemmas. However the more I explore the play and his character the more I am thinking he needs to have an eccentric edge as he does stand alone in his knowledge of what needs to be done.

Van Helsing speaks quite briskly to others, correcting their attitudes and behaviours, apologising for being sharp with them and I am concentrating on how I can show this whilst at the same time showing he is a likeable character.

I am also recognising how challenging he sometimes finds many of the other characters, especially Jonathan and Mina and am wanting to show this in my interplay with others. We are starting to block the play this week and I am wanting to maintain this in his character as we work with Stephen on the movements in each scene.

I am enjoying the rehearsal process, although it can be difficult remembering the actions that much accompany certain points in the play as well as maintain the thought process to support the words. And sometimes the accent gets the better of me, where even I do not understand what I have just said…and I have the script in front of me!!!!


Kayleigh (playing Lucy)

So it’s only the second week of rehearsals, but I think I have now successfully terrified most of the cast. Mwahahah! 🙂
I’ve definitely got more comfortable with Lucy and I’m starting to find her changes in Act One which has resulted in people now being very scared of me
(although I promise I’m not that mad in real life!!)
It’s really great to feel like I’m making some sort of progress with Lucy, as last week I was feeling like I was in a very daunting place. How things can change!
We did our very first run of Act One today, and It was great to see how each of the scenes interlink, and how various moments in different scenes mirror each other.
It’s really helped me to see the links between Renfield and Lucy especially, as they never meet within the play but there are moments where they share similar characteristics.
It was also really encouraging to see the amount of work everyone has put in and to see how far we have already progressed.
I’m now extra excited for the rest of this week and next week! 🙂 lets see if I can terrify everyone that little bit more! 😉


Mr Renfield (played by Mr Simon can’t-move-act-and-remember-lines-at-the-same-time Mitelman)

Bad Scotsman Director make me say same words over and over until temples are throbbing.
Make me move in odd ways. Mr Oswald say it for my own good but we don’t believe him. We think he just sadist.
Today bad Director man make me bang wall over and over until hands were sore.
But me have tricksies up my sleeve…me not bang wall in time so it make all other strange-people-saying-other-people’s-words go wrong.
My Master will make skirt-wearing Scot pay when he come. And he come soon…15th August me thinks…
Poor Renfield. Much maligned but kind, not blind. Everyone hate Renfield. But they don’t understand oh no, they no know that flies are tasty and full of life.
They think it bad sad mad but really it good…
Me have to go now and wait for my Master.
I have pretty bird giving me glad eye. But it’ll be sorry…


Mina’s Diary – Week II

Jonathan has been away, and out of contact for more than one month now. I’ve stopped counting the days. They stretched out too long, but the daily routine stays the same; any news yet? Any news? Any news today?? DON’T YOU THINK I’D LIKE TO BE ASKING SOMEONE THE SAME QUESTION?? But WHO IS THERE TO ASK? No note, no returns to my letters; what on earth can be wrong? My last words to him run around and around in my brain and just when I think I’ve found a way to divert myself, with a good long walk or with my Ladies Magazine – there they are; ‘GO AWAY!’. I told him to go away. I brought it on myself, and now he might never come back. No. I can’t believe that. My Jonathan would never abandon me like that, but if he’s not choosing to stay away it must be some terrible injury he’s sustained. And dear little Lucy – at least I have her here with me; but even she makes life so difficult to endure sometimes. Why can’t she learn to keep quiet like everyone else? Why must she persist in flirting with danger all the time, flouncing about the countryside with the young men of the neighbourhood – why can’t she learn to look after herself?? I am sure I shall drive myself quite mad in your absence darling Jonathan – and I also suspect that if you ever come to read this you will laugh with me at my silliness. Of course Lucy will grow out of it, everything is going to be fine. I confided in Florrie today; I’m not quite sure what she was talking about, but I feel confident she will help to keep Lucy under control. Hurry back. Please.


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