On Saturday I witnessed a watershed in rehearsal period: the choreography of the “charivari,” or opening act. The opening gives the audience a sampling of the entire performance and sets the mood of the production. This year’s charivari music, by (as is the entire show score) composer Tristan Moore, is inspired by the music of the 1920s. Choreographer Matt Williams, late of “Séance on a Wet Afternoon” at Lincoln Center in Manhattan, fills our charivari with the Charleston, partner dancing, Quickstep, acrobatics, and pyramids!
The troupers were given the afternoon off so they would have ample time to prepare for the annual banquet. The banquet is a Smirkus tradition which was started at least 15 years ago by a former cook who wanted to showcase her skills in the kitchen to the entire troupe and staff. This year, Katie Schroeder and her team cranked out a three-course meal in their 10 x 6 trailer. The meal was, in fact, a kind of Thanksgiving – in which performers, staff and crew offered praise and thanks to each other for the many gifts shared at Smirkus.
After dinner, some of us walked to the hallowed waterfall on the Smirkus campus. I took a moment to unwind after a very exciting day and absorbed the beauty that is northeastern Vermont.
EIGHT more days until Showtime!
Tour Communications Intern