Playing Valencienne in "The Merry Widow" was a fantastic experience from the start of rehearsals to closing night. To this day, Valencienne, or as we called her during the production, Val, will go down in the books as my favorite character I have ever played. Throughout the show, she has times of being flirty, sad, perplexed, showy, and best of all, she's a pretty funny gal.
Everyone in the cast was a delight to work with, so full of talent and all so kind. Plus, they even shared their delicious holiday treats and chocolates with us. (I'll let you know that none of us were ever in lack of something sweet to eat during production.) As you can assume, the castmate I worked with the most was the talented tenor who played Camille, Bill Dwyer. I'm so grateful we got to work together. Valencienne and Camille are constantly embracing and breaking away and twirling and crossing. The staging is almost like a dance. In blocking like this, you not only need to know your own staging, but you need to know your partners as well. When we had down time in rehearsal, Bill and I would run our scenes over and over again until we both knew exactly where we needed to be...and then, we would run our scenes again. I'm very grateful for his patience and diligence as we brought these characters to life.
And! Let me tell you about the costumes! Wow! Jane and Jesus did a fantastic job as usual. I had four costume changes throughout the show, and every costume was beautifully and creatively made. I don't think I could pick a favorite if I had to. The costumes against Adam Veness's well designed sets made me believe in the lavish, rich culture of Pontevedro.
I'm very grateful that I had another opportunity to perform on Light Opera Work's stage. As usual, it was a beautiful and rewarding experience.