Pete's Blog

Rehearsing The Commercial Traveller

‘Rehearse’ sort of implies that something is being done again and, of course, for many productions the play is being done again because it’s been taken off the shelf and reproduced – which is fine. Why not revisit old plays if they are good? But The Commercial Traveller is a brand new play and rehearsals, which we are deeply in at the moment, are anything but about ‘re-producing’. Everything that is happening is new – and what I am enjoying most of all is the way each member of the team comes up with an idea, airs it and we play it out – and there has been so much genuine play this year. I like to state the problem of the moment, for example, at this point Elsie is going into Fogg’s, the funeral director’s, and we see the scene from the street, but then, I say, we want to reverse the whole thing into a mirror image so we see the same scene from inside the funeral director’s. How are we going to do that? Well first one person suggests a way and we try it, then someone else suggests a modification and we try that, and either it works or it doesn’t, so someone else suggests a modification or another way – and after half an hour’s play it all settles into something beautiful – and I can sit back and watch and enjoy seeing a group of talented people being thoroughly creative! I love it!