It's the new year, and we're making a new return to an old show!
On Tuesday night, we kicked off rehearsals for Savage Umbrella's remount of THE AWAKENING, taking place at The Southern Theater March 3rd-11th. Adapted freely from Kate Chopin's 1899 novel landmark feminist novel, THE AWAKENING focuses on one woman's struggle to become her most authentic self, amidst a society unwilling to see her for who she is. Think music, waves, and sexual tension thick as the humid New Orleans air.
The first version of THE AWAKENING took place in 2010 at The Gremlin Theater in St. Paul. Though this time around, most of the performers in the room (there's 14 of them!) are new to the show, there are a few collaborators who took part in the old version. I talked to director/writer Laura Leffler-McCabe, and performers Emily Dussault, Russ Dugger, and Amber Davis about what's exciting them as they return to THE AWAKENING a second time.
"I know that this time around, we're going to execute a some of the important pieces of the play in different ways. I'm really excited to explore and create those pieces with all the new people in the room! I'm so grateful for the old cast, and also excited for the all new voices in the room. Plus, last time, we performed at the Gremlin. I think being at The Southern, which is so beautiful and large and spacious, will make it easier to explore the grandeur of the piece."
"The Awakening is such a beautiful book. Even though the actual plot is pretty straightforward and simple, there’s so much depth to the characters and settings. I think that everyone can relate to a feeling of being trapped. Edna’s struggle, where she's trying to find freedom and not being sure what it is or looks like, is incredibly relatable."
"I'm excited to be in another large ensemble. It’s been a while since we’ve had a huge group to play with. I'm interested in seeing the ways the script changes and what this group will bring to these characters."
"It’s my first time performing at The Southern. I think the show will feel very cool and different there. The space has a space, breath, and air to it that the Gremlin didn’t have. It's a big contrast. I think it will give room for Edna’s head space, and mirror the things she’s going through emotionally. Hopefully we can balance that with our chorus work and movement. It's also exciting to see what new minds bring to a script."
THE AWAKENING runs March 3 - 11, 2017, Sundays through Fridays at 7:30 PM, Saturdays at 2:00 PM & 7:30 PM.