Shakespeare,  Theatre,  Wildflower

The Director’s Dilemma

I know, I know.  Most people think the director’s dilemma is probably casting the show and sometimes, that is the case.  However, when one is taking on one of Shakespeare’s so called “problem plays” with the knowledge you have to get said play to 80 to 90 minutes, the dilemma is editing.  Some plays are fairly easy to cut.  Measure for Measure is not one of them.  There are several story lines, the scenes alternate between comedy, tragedy and judicial mumbo jumbo.  Some characters are very long winded. (No, Duke Vincentio, you really don’t need another monologue!). As the director & in my case, the editor, it was imperative that I made sure the story remained clear while still doing a fairly ruthless cutting of 110 pages.  That’s right. 110 pages.  Four edits (and two weeks of tearing my hair out) later, I got it down to slightly less than half of that. At tonight’s first read through, I was able to sigh in relief as we came in under 90 minutes.  That combined with an amazing cast made me even more excited to tackle this difficult play.  One thing is certain:  this all female cast is bad ass and they are as eager as I am to get started.

AA, BA, MFA in Theatre. Retired Adjunct Professor in Theatre & Film, Sacramento City College. Currently Acting Instructor/Coach for Sacramento Vocal Music. Proud member of Wildflower Ensemble Company, a female acting ensemble proudly presenting free Shakespeare utilizing Original Practices. Married, two sons, three grandsons.

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