Well it has been a rather exhausting week at the Canting Crew HQ, with Dracula coming on leaps and bounds.
Our dedicated and marvellous Wardrobe Mistress and Queen of Props, Pam, has truly risen to the challenge of brining Dracula to life. Her suitcase has been open every day to reveal the most curious assortment of oddities! From a Victorian wash bowls and petticoats to dog bowls and wedding veils.
A huge thank you also goes to the good folk of the Richmond Shakespeare Society. For the loan of some great medical paraphernalia, and other assorted wonders!I always find this past of the process really exciting, every day is a little bit like Christmas.
We also spend time this week listening a lot. To all of the sound and effects that will bring the show to life, some of it a bit disconcerting, but all good fun.
Our make-up artist saw the play for the first time, and said what a white knuckle ride it is. She ran off home to begin mixing potions with glee, muttering about blood and burns and bite marks!
We have had 2 brilliant runs of the play this week, where I found myself having goosebumps and shivers! This is shaping up so well! all of the cast are gearing up for the weekend get in, when we build the set and light the show. I gave them a well earned rest, with an afternoon picnic before the hard graft!
We now have an archive of our cast diaries and video diaries on our wed site, with lots of sneak peeks at how the show is shaping up. Www.thecantingcrew.com
Now the diaries
Mrs Manners (Jennifer Lee-May)
All I can think of tonight is my dear dear girls, one is now so happy in love and finally married to dear Mr Harker, who I’d admit I was too quick to think bad of. I truly thought he had abandoned dear Mina..oh but but alas I have little respite for worry as it is now my dear Lucy I must think of, the poor darling is so sick I’m at my wits end. I have decided I will write to dear Dr Seward and see if he will come minister to my Lucy as she grows paler and thinner by the day. I am sure in part she misses her dear sister deeply and whilst Florrie provides a little comfort she’s is hardly the company for dear Lucy.
Oh if only I could know what to do, her dear Father left this world so abruptly I am terrified that Lucy will be taken the same way. Her night terrors are quite alarming I have had to move her to the blue room overlooking the garden at the back of house so she is further from the attic rooms. I can not have more gossip in the rafters of the house. I am glad that Florrie has sense enough to be grateful for her employment so wouldn’t dare step out of line and I genuinely think she has a fondness for my girls. One day, with further instruction and guidance from my part, she may even ascend the ranks to become a housekeeper; once I am long gone of course. If only I could discourage her from interacting with soldiers. Woman of service must know they can not cavort with males if they wish for a long long career. She will learn, in time, and indeed I should not worry as knowing the honesty of men one will surely break her heart soon enough and she’ll be resolved to a fruitful servitude instead.
Now I must think on and compose my letter to Dr Seward, I do hope he will come quickly.
Van Helsing played by Michael Brady
So she is dead! All of my efforts have been futile.
What am I doing here? How could I ever have thought I could face him? He has grown stronger since we last met? I won’t be able to defeat him.
What is it about humans that makes us so hellbent on destroying ourselves?
I can think about the past no more. It has been a source of comfort for me. But no longer will I ever be able to view my life as I have done. Where I am going is a place where no one should venture. This situation is just spiralling out of control and events are happening at a rate faster than I could ever have imagined. I’m afraid that I’ll never know what I have known again.
But I must have faith and I must hold on to my faith.
But this is so difficult when all I see around me is pain.
And all I see in the mirror is someone who no longer knows himself and whose own behaviour alienates himself.
And yet I have to face the others knowing what I know and showing them the darkest and most inhumane aspect of man; and I must convince them what they see is real. And that I can defeat him.
They think they are in pain, but they have no idea what pain is.