Brian P. Streett of Brian P. Street Photography document the Between the Tackles in the 2nd weekend. (BTW, he really likes doing event photography and is quite good at it -- as you'll be able to see for yourself.)
It's over. The set has been dismantled and put away. The cast and crew have all moved on to other projects. (My husband and I took the kids to the Steelers v. Titans game--which was awesome and horrible at the same time.)
But Steph and I haven't moved on from Between the Tackles.
We began again. The show closed on a Saturday night, and the next Monday, Steph and I (and Franco) drove down to Asheville to director Michael Lilly's house to pick his brains. What worked? What didn't work? What comments did he hear from his theatre-friends. We already had a list of things we wanted to change*...how did those proposed changes strike him?
Then. How did what he said strike us?
Then. Back to work.
After another week of back-and-forth editing and revision we now have BETWEEN THE TACKLES v7.1. Whew!
So, if you know a theatre who's interested in a modern comedy for a small cast with a simple set... let us know. We'd love for these characters live and entertain again.
* These included some gems the actors either added, improved, or were flubbed mis-remembered lines. For example: Lillypad, Tebowing, I love you (to Ryan's mom), Princess, Little Miss Marky, mooing, Ryan falling on his sword... Funny stuff.
PS - True story: Steph's husband came by the other day to have my husband smoke a life-time's supply of home-made pepperoni. The ensuing conversation about casings, insta-cure methods, internal temperatures, drafts/airflow, refrigerator temperatures and humidity levels for curing would have blown your mind. Either this is evidence of how un-creative Steph and I actually are, or it is once again life-imitating-art-imitating-life. Either way: funny to me.
*** spoiler alert *** We asked the cast what their favorite lines or moments from rehearsal were... from announcer Doug Shaw My favorite line is when I get to say...."That's the perennial question,..." after Ryan asks, "Can't we have this discussion some other time, when you're not PMSing?" from Jeff Messer (Ryan) RYAN: They called her on a Sunday? Best thing about this whole thing has been the ease an rapport wth the cast. There is a level of trust required when you have to work fast, not to mention on a new work, and this team had it top to bottom. I'm lucky to be able to do this acting thing, and luckier to be doing it with the likes of Andrew, Paul, Anna, Doug, Ami and Michael. All of whom, I would march through the gates of Hell with. Hell, Michigan, that is. I'm not a fan of brimstone and hellfire. from director Michael Lilly Fav rehearsal moment was when Ryan/Jeff adlibbed "I think that was a dude"! I'm still laughing. from Paul Trani (Elliot)
Favorite Line: "...I know EXACTLY what your life is like!"
Favorite moments: Handling the foam from the "beers" during the kick-off cheer.
Note to future props managers: warm root beers foam A LOT.
Actress Anna Franklin's favorite lines (as JESSE): JESSE: El-li-ot. I'm sorry! I bet you'd like a Resse's Pieces for every time somebody said that to you, but it had to be done. Actress Anna Franklin's favorite memories of working on the show: Loved those nummy smoked ribs you brought! Delicious! Also loved working with this cast and crew throughout the whole rehearsal process. Bonus funny surprising moment: After scene one, I reached up to move the airport sign out of sight - the whole thing fell off its hinge and nearly brained me (but I jumped out of the way).
It is not often that one feels proud to get older, past about the age of ten years or so. Or, rather I should say, it is not often that one says so out loud. For whatever reason, we are supposed to hide our aging and pretend to be "29 and holding" - who wants to hold at 29? Turning 30 was liberating and wonderful. It felt great to get out of the instability and self-destructive twenties...and I know I am not alone in that thought. Each and every birthday, I am happy to get one more year behind me so that I can see what I am in for the next.
This year, I turned 38 years old. I am genuinely excited to turn 40 - a brand new decade full of challenges and changes. Maybe I have this outlook because I have sincerely relished each year of each decade, taking my time to do things and make life decisions. I never rushed into anything - and whether that makes me incredibly smart or downright immature, I don't know. But, whichever, I am happy for my personal path through my life so far.
While watching the play for the second and third time, I realized how proud and happy I am to be "middle-aged." Even though I mentally feel roughly 25 years old, when I can relate to the struggles and benchmarks celebrated onstage and representing the "middle-aged" I feel so good to be here, in this time of my life. It's the smallest of details that mirror my own life - the ability to afford the better beer, empathy for difficult marriages, welcoming a new child into the mix, friends making tough life choices, and the camaraderie of Sunday afternoon ball games watched in real-life houses and not college apartments.
This human element is something I am most proud of while watching the play unfold. The fact that Britt so eloquently couched it in humor is all the more amazing and touching. Getting older can leave you nostalgic for younger days filled with fewer responsibilities. But it can also leave you grateful for being content in where you are.
We are all getting older, every single day. Celebrate by going (or going back) to see "Between the Tackles." You have three more chances before the curtain closes on this production forever.