We had a visit from the lovely Darren Bell today who braved the oestrogen of the rehearsal room at the Menier Chocolate Factory to come and document some of the unfolding madness that is Jerry’s Girls. I don’t THINK Ria Jones was banging a massive drum or AJ Casey was sliding into splits at the time.. Though ‘SLY’ (Sarah Louise Young) was almost certainly treating us to an impromptu rendition of one of her many alter ego’s..
This is the most chaotic and hilarious rehearsal process I’ve ever known. I laid down the gauntlet to the ladies on the first day by describing the show thus: ‘the audience should feel like they are guests at a party, and the thing we all have in common is Jerry..’
So we turned rehearsal into a party. There’s cake, EVERY DAY. (Anna Jane Casey has kids. She gets up early. She bakes, often, and to demand.) The kettle is always on and sometimes cues are missed as ladies make tea. If there’s an opportunity to make each other laugh, it is taken. We stand around the piano and share anecdotes about Jerry Herman. I have high hopes that this will translate into a brilliant, spontaneous and witty show where the cast are so relaxed they can deal with anything.. OR we could get to opening night and have very little except a load of stories about how bonkers our rehearsals were.. And maybe that’s the kind of party our audience will want!