Portrait Of A Lady

3 May

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I adore Oscar Wilde.

…His delicious turn of phrase, and the stinging snap of talent he had for making fun of his own society.

…I like to think he caught the gene by some inter-marrying, 12th-cousin-removed bit a-la Jane Austen, which he then passed on (via intellectual love-child twins) to Noel Coward & PG Wodhouse, who would pick up and absolutely run with it…following then one talent upon the other until we reach current day masters like Julian Fellowes (with his tongue-in-cheek alter ego, the Dowager Countess: Lady Grantham), and Stephen Fry (with his everything.)

…The love/hate relationship between the players in their worlds are magnificent, and ridiculous…full of excess, silver-spoon-fed charms, and often, completely sheltered, backward, innocents. They go to places like Ascot, and Royal Assemblies, own crowns made of ancient jewels traceable as far back as their earliest blue blooded relatives, go to court, are presented to the Queen, have “coming-outs” (not in any way associated with their sexual identities), regularly “do” the Season, and have titles that make their calling cards and room-arrivals, whip heads to attention.

…And this is the world I have delightfully been welcomed into, with my next role…(after a stiff fight with a hell of a lot of talent in the room.)

The Honorable Gwendolen Fairfax, daughter of Lord and Lady Bracknell.

As extravagant and precisely turned out as a wedding cake in human form, this splendidly spoiled young woman of means and royal shoulder-rubbing, is fast on her way to becoming a force to be reckoned with, rivaled only by her mother.  She knows what she wants and always gets it, and always will, and that is as it should be. 

…God bless the English Aristocracy.

Amen.

Indeed.

What fun to roll these words around with my tongue and glean the perfectly timed-out significance of a single, solitary, rise, of, eyebrow.

Mdm. Director has shared that “choreography” will be more the tune we set, than mere blocked staging.  Every movement, a clean-cut, efficient, specifically intended gesture…to better tighten-up and suck the air of excess out of the performance, allowing the language to take center stage as the icing on the cake.

…As it bloody well SHOULD be.

Sheer de-light!

A lot of work ahead.

…But this time without diving into war histories and genocides and suicides.

I loved my time spent in the last two worlds of theatre, but now we have moved on through a vast time warp to ridiculous frivolity, wrapped up in corsets and big hats, where women would rather kill themselves with kindness than ever admit their rankles are up…where butlers and man-servants abound, multiple households are a given, but the house number coming from the “fashionable” side of town, is REALLY what matters. 

…A world where people are so completely wrapped up in themselves that they invent OTHER selves purely for the sake of “playing,” get engaged months before they’ve even met, and keep diaries simply for the joy of a sensational read on a boring train ride.

Bliss.

…And I think, a fairly interesting character study via “diary entry,” is soon in the coming.

~D 

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