Pictured: Amanda Collins (Mary Bennet) and Vichet Chum (Arthur de Bourgh). Photo by Meghan Moore.
It was exciting to see the last rehearsal of Miss Bennet:Christmas At Pemberley played out in the rehearsal hall, then the stage, to put props, costumes, lights, sound together by skilled artists and actors, overseen by the Stage Manager and Director. Those rehearsals go on all weekend to prepare for the play Previews, November 28-30 and finally on Opening Night, December 1.
These final days are the most exhausting, yet exhilarating for everyone. On the days before going to the stage, actors perform the play with visions of the stage. The cast performs the pretense of the set, opening what will be a door and, when there is a missing prop, ad-lib and laugh together as the Stage Manager slides into the scene with the prop. The actors resume their roles and the scene goes on.
This play needs perfect comedic timing, not just with words or action but with looks towards each other and the audience. And, these actors have it all. This is a period drama that unites delightful characters from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. As you would suspect, there are moments of wit and a celebration of love beside a large looming Christmas Tree that provides delightful moments.
The four Bennet sisters give us many moments of laughter with their husbands and suitors. The couples are charming characters. The actors take us in with their character yet blend together to tell this holiday story. It is quite lovely to go back in time, if only in the fantasy of this play, and appreciate the elegant garments, manners, and innocence of romance.
There are eight actors in this play with diverse roles that blend the tone and time of the period. If you attend MRT plays, you will recognize some of the actors, now in very different roles. If you have not been to MRT plays, you will appreciate the quality of the play and performers.
So, get into the spirit of the holidays at MRT – this play is for the entire family.
–Gail Gauthier, Cohort Alumni
Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley runs November 28 – December 23