Part 4: ‘Finding Big Love’ By Kristen Kelly

“Things happen so suddenly sometimes.” In Charles Mee’s Big Love, Nikos says this to Lydia. And sometimes that’s the only thing you can say.

Kristen Garaffo (Olympia). Photo courtesy of The Hub Theatre.

In the theatre, your family becomes the people who are joining you on the journey – the cast in the show, the design team, and the many people who are working as hard as you to tell a story. You are around them so much, working together day and night to get to opening. In so many ways, you just can’t imagine being without them. They become your confidants, your co-conspirators, your partners in passion, and your inspiration through the process. And then suddenly, you open up that small circle, and invite hundreds of new people into your world. The shift happens so suddenly sometimes. And looking out, and suddenly seeing a sea of audience, is both terrifying and exhilarating.

David Zimmerman (Nikos), Josh Sticklin (Oed), and Michael Kevin Darnall (Constantine). Photo courtesy of The Hub Theatre.

No matter how many productions I direct, I will be forever amazed by how quickly a cast can come together, how quickly they bond—especially when the process is so physical. Trust has to come quickly in order to take big risks early in rehearsals. In a production like Big Love, that bond, that connection, is critical. There are so many moving parts in this show; so many technical elements, so many bodies being thrown around. There is an ever present danger—a risk—in just being out there.

Just four short weeks ago, we set out to tell this Big story. Our journey hasn’t been easy. We’ve endured epic storms (not just one, but two!), downed trees, power outages, fire alarms, and so many other theatrical mishaps that each and every day, something new added to the absurdity. But the amazing thing is that everything is working for this play. There is something about Charles Mee and his plays where the magic comes from knowing that ANYTHING can happen at any time. We experienced this firsthand along our journey. It’s been an epic challenge, in a very condensed time (thank you Dominion Power), but we are rallying as a team -a cast and production family -and are about to bring an incredible production to a first audience tonight.

“Things happen so suddenly sometimes”. And sometimes that is all you can say. That’s the magic in this Big story. I hope you enjoy our gift to you of Big Love.

Big Love plays from July 13th to August 5th at The Hub Theatre – at the John Swazye Theatre – 9431 Silver King Court, in Fairfax, Virginia. Here are directions. Purchase tickets online.

LINKS
Read Part One of ‘Finding Big Love.’
Read Part Two of ‘Finding Big Love.’
Read Part Three of ‘Finding Big Love.’

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