Well, my time here in Dublin is coming to an end, and with that comes showcase week at the Gaiety School of Acting! It was such an eventful and enjoyable week, so let me walk you through what my last few days looked like!
Most morning classes this week consisted of showcase rehearsals where we started to pull different scenes and work from classes over the weeks and mesh them together. If I were to offer a tip (which I’m about to do) it would be to have all of your scenes memorized! It’s easy not to do this because being in a new place can feel so exciting but it will definitely save you and your whole group a lot of grief with your director if you come in with a hand on your scenes! It is not something one should stress out about, but being familiar with the pieces makes the rest of the week go a lot smoother. Anyways, showcase rehearsal is exactly what it sounds like. It's a rehearsal process for a show at the end of the week, but it's also a time to reminisce and acknowledge all of the work done these past four weeks. It’s time to play! I feel like I really got to play in all of my pieces this week and explore as an actor while collaborating with the director to make a beautiful piece of theatre.
Most afternoon classes this week were final Manifesto classes. At the Gaiety Manifesto is a class similar to devising theatre but really it’s just about getting work out there and continuing to keep the creative spirit alive. This class was one of my favorites and in this final week, we really got to explore working with others and making a completely weird, avant-garde, but fun piece that allowed us to be so authentically ourselves. These Manifesto performances were constantly changing and adapting and it wasn’t until Wednesday that we finally got the pieces done. I think that’s an important thing to note because there were moments when I was nervous that all of the time spent wasn’t in a traditional rehearsal, but now I’m so grateful for that. Even though it was showcase week and we had a goal, there was still so much time to explore as artists and collaborate. This made the final show really feel like it was mine, and ours as a group instead of something we had to do.
On Friday (the day of the showcase) we had a morning tech run-through where we went through all the queues and took pictures. Then we broke for lunch before coming back to the Black Box Theatre at the Gaiety and performing. I honestly didn’t know what to expect with this performance. I didn’t know if we would even have an audience or how “professional” it would look. But, the entire show worked out wonderfully. We had a full theatre, and everything went smoothly! It was such a nice way to end my time in Ireland and have a real culminating moment with all of the people who made this trip so special. After we took out bows, we received our certificates from school and then said goodbye!
Going into showcase week I had absolutely no idea what to expect. I did not know what the showcase would look or how we would go about rehearsing. Now, I believe that is the magic of the showcase. There was an idea in mind, but really we got a week to work as an ensemble and with a director to make a show that was all ours. Showcase week can be daunting and it does have stressful moments, but it was well worth it!
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I'm Amelia McCabe and I'm a Current Freshman at the University of Tennessee. I'm originally from Chicago, Illinois and I love getting to go home and visit the city! I'm a theatre major and spend lots of time acting, with friends, or as a barista!