We had a lovely send-off party in Shoreditch last Sunday that left everyone in high spirits, if not a bit sick ("I've been poisoned!") for 9am rehearsals the next day.
Rehearsals back at home went well despite the scorching heat that managed to time itself perfectly with first costume runs. James Bryant announced, "I am a waterfall" - an accurate description of the state we were all in during Nights at the Circus, and the production run of 4.48 Psychosis left me looking like I'd recently drowned.
To add to the perspiration, the vans containing all our set and props all had to be packed via a life-sized game of Tetris, and was driven up through the night. A heroic effort from our production team has meant that most of the shows have been pre-plotted; something for which we are eternally grateful. We optimistically hoped to tech all six shows in one day; needless to say that didn't quite happen... but we're plodding along in cheery fashion. The mood in our camp is jolly and Edinburgh is buzzing already.
The Mile is starting to look quite colourful as well. Wandering up and down rehearsals I was accosted several times by eager performers. They seemed unperturbed by my full face of 4.48 make up. I am sure come Friday when the Fringe opens officially you'll barely be able to move for flyers.
Edinburgh forces everyone to eat quite randomly, depending on time constraints and whatever Lidl has on offer. On one side of me Sam Adamson is eating mussels and crayfish and on the other Katie Cherry is munching chocolate cereal.
These guys will be off to tech The Erpingham Camp in a couple of minutes; the rest of us are off to see some comedy rap. A few of our number are napping in a bundle, and a queue has formed for the shower as we hadn't quite figured out how to turn on the water this morning.
We love our house but are convinced it is haunted; we managed both to get locked in and out last night and have had about seventeen power cuts, but we also have a dungeon so we're happy.
Over the next couple of days we will be finishing the techs, doing press calls and marketing shifts before we open on Friday with The Erpingham Camp, Minotaur, and 4.48 Psychosis ... and I'm sure relaxing in the pub a bit as well.