Wednesday, February 10. Seven weeks to go.
Outside the rope sandal hanging suits in a row in rainbow colors, red can can dresses, velvet jackets, tulle skirts and – wedged in among the clothes and accessories – itusågade lady’s legs. Props department has taken up a hefty load from the repository that the actors can use during rehearsals for inspiration.
Ulf Drakenbergsgatan and Sven-Åke Gustavsson rehearsing a scene outside the duchess’s palace. They play fish and frog, two butlers that come with an invitation from the Queen to play croquet.
– Will the house be on stage?
– No, replies the director Anna Pettersson .
But some sort of livery, they might have. The actors go out and pick clothes from the clothes racks nobody outside the door and enters the green velvet dress and pink silk blazer.
The shouts invitation was their time, but then knasar it to themselves and the wrong word comes out. An invitation will be a debugging, croquet becomes a croque monsieur, the scout ahead and come in on the fake turtle soup and frog legs.
In front of him are the white discs cut the frog and fish. An idea comes up to make a back up on the figure so it becomes like a billboard, which could be “frog legs and big strong SEK 99″.
Anna Pettersson sitting with a laptop on your lap and taking notes.
– Sit down here and we’ll do a little script together, she says.
Ulf Drakenbergsgatan would like to establish some lines.
– If there is space for improvisation, I feel I must say again all the time.
the next scene that is repeated is when Alice meets the caterpillar. A heavy blue comp is on when Carina Boberg enters smoking his long pipe, dressed in a blue-green tulle costume that will later be filled with smoke and light. The caterpillar is fully occupied by itself and does not listen to Alice when she tries to talk to her.
– Should we have recorded or live music, asks Anna Pettersson.
Everyone agrees the play itself, it should work. A little while later, Sven-Åke Gustavsson bearing on an electric guitar.
Anna Pettersson picks apart and put together: Miss Julie, The Wild Duck and now Alice in Wonderland theater which is also a part of her research as a doctoral student at the Stockholm Academy of dramatic Arts.
one of the things she is looking for is to try to find the essence of the drama, the translating it into the present.
her preparation included asking for the audience’s expectations. Miss Julie knows almost everyone, but what Alice in Wonderland is really about, most have no idea, however, has the credentials and pictures from the Disney movie.
– People are very visual expectations. It should be with a cat, smiling, Alice will be small and large, there should be checkered floor. It is expected symbols. This makes it opens up great opportunities to use this ensemble experience.
– We take us the freedom to add other things in Alice in Wonderland, thoughts, images, reflections on the period we are in now. A difficult time, we are undergoing a major change, and the theater is a great place to pick up that kind of dilemmas. We try to create a world that is evocative.
Anna Pettersson want to explore how to get the actors in the preparatory process. Therefore, Alice in Wonderland received four weeks extra rehearsal time. It has been used for workshops, lectures, talks and meetings with reference groups, for example, with people who worked with people on the run, and with those who had themselves been on the run.
No script was from the beginning, everyone was supposed to know the story of the girl who falls down a rabbit hole and ends up in a fantasy world. Ramhandlingen is something that emerge during the process.
– I am filled with joy every day when I see how the actors’ physical impulses create new scenes, such as we had never been able to think out in advance.
the rehearsals started just after Christmas but the first meeting with the cast was already in May last year. Anna Pettersson asked for things that they would like to do but never made a scene. Carina Boberg wanted to sing the blues.
Wednesday, February 17. Six weeks to go.
Repetition days start with dance training. In these cold times are just six of the eight actors in place at ten o’clock in the reps room. They have high hats on their heads and sticks in their hands. Show Music can be heard, sometimes also heard choreographer Hans Marklund’s voice that counts 1, 2, 3, 4 … Now sit steps. But the hats do not feel so good, they have mixed up, maybe? They are made by the actor’s main dimensions, assures production designer Lisa Hjertén, but you do not really know how they fit with wigs.
After a short pause, drag the actors wearing the red cancan-skirts for a game vaudeville dancing with ruffles waving and bensparkar.
in the costume atelier grow the imaginative costumes until brocade, sequins and plumes. The king’s costume has been the theater confections in cernitlera on the chest, a few pieces of candy really be sewn on before every performance that he can chew on. But it is that it is fresh and soft, so you can sew it.
Kålmaskens costume has a base of long sausages in green cloth with black print and a transparent space coat with sewn electrical wiring for LED lights.
a pink headdress with feathers hanging and glistening on a cupboard, on the floor behind stands a large white box with the rest of the suit. Tim Mårtensson, costume designer for including After Dark delivered the suit just before Christmas, he came by train from Stockholm who was standing for three hours.
– Then he wear that big box to the theater, it was the not into the taxi, says Lisa Hjertén.
in May last year, she left and Anna Pettersson, which makes the scenery together, in the sketches to costume and set design.
– But it’s easy making sketches. I feel truly humbled pros here.
The Queen’s gown is another test of strength. The upper part is made in the costume atelier, in part consists of a rack manufactured in the workshop, as well as the heavy collar.
– It’s a challenge to get the pieces together, it requires cooperation between departments, says Anna.
Another example is the bright pink flamingo as Hatter will riding on and stuck together with his suit. The workshop is flamingo body ready, with its checkered extraben.
– You’re looking for weird things in the world of theater, Velcro in the pink can be today’s findings, says Lisa Hjertén when we stop the attributes pennies that attach flamingo heads on croquet mallets.
Wednesday, February 24. Five weeks to go.
Gizem Erdogan, who plays Alice sat curled up on the sofa in the break room. Today, the ensemble started to rehearse on the main stage, a little more than half of the play has “trampled through,” technology has been tested. Now begins an intensive period of shared today, repetitions between 10-15 and 19-22. The pause in the middle of the day, she uses often to prepare for the evening, or training, Thai boxing, yoga. Before the premiere, she feels excited.
– I hope it will be like a magic and visual works that are just swinging in all directions with dance and percussion and everything what it will contain. This is a joyful work that is so exploratory and you get as much space as an actor.
She talks about the first four weeks of rehearsal in which they tested different things. Played rock stars, and worked with Greek dramas, tried to switch between subject and object.
– There we can take with us now as a subtitle, an attitude.
Gizem Erdogan talking about Lewis Carroll’s nonsense language that was provocative in its time but now I feel old and refers to the chants that no longer knows. Instead, the ensemble has tried to investigate what is today’s nonsense.
To connect with contemporary life is important but it should not be too obvious.
– We have had many discussions about it. I think the connection can occur in the encounter with the audience.
Who is your Alice?
– She’s a survivor, prepared for the unpredictable in a changing world. She is an active, curious and brave young woman who question authority.
How have you approached the role?
– I work with Alice from the outside in , starting with the physical, her body language and quick turns. I work with still. There’s no juicy text to bite into, so I examine Alice little at a time.
Gizem Erdogan browsing a bit of a notebook, her repdagbok, where she notes their insights about Alice.
– Alice is reflective and questioning Wonderland, which I think is not so far from the times we live in with their power structures. The king and queen who rules the game cards, Alice in certain situations is exposed and mercy. It has dark sides. And the existential, the caterpillar who asks; Who are you?
the caterpillar and cat are characters that feels contemporary, she says.
– They are charismatic authority who live by their own standards, obvious in any way, sovereign. In the scenes, it has helped us in the beginning of the process, got to play rock stars, and take the room with the obvious.
What is the biggest challenge?
– it is to find the balance between when Alice is small and vulnerable and when she is active and brave. Then there is of course a challenge to bring together all the different pieces.
What was your image of Alice from the beginning?
– I have dyed much of the Disney picture, an innocent child who bit passively standing by and watching. But then I read the tale and discovered that the original is she bold and cool. She makes an active choice when she follows the rabbit down the hole. My Alice chooses to jump, she will not fall.
Tuesday, March 1. Four weeks left.
From a seat in the lounge in front of the main stage Anna Pettersson listen to audio. Queen’s cries cut ears, while Gizem Erdogan on stage and getting ready for the test flight. Long wires hanging from the ceiling. She hoisted slowly up toward the ceiling, she disappears before our eyes, lowered halfway, test flight mode on the stomach. Selenium is not perfect, must be adjusted. Down again. Next time she celebrated up, a background movie and it looks as if she is floating in the air and fall at once.
– Amazing, absolutely magical cries Anna Pettersson.
Next Aviator Carina Boberg. She tried once before, but now it’s more fun. She laughs delighted afterwards.
– If Carina thought it was fun maybe you could hoist her up a little faster, suggests Anna Pettersson.
In reps integers are Jan Unesson to pull on knee pads to test the custom-made stilts as a hatter to go on when he rides at the flamingo. He sits in the window and the wooden feet in shoes that are attached on stilts and provgår.
– Now it works, but perhaps the emphasis is too much on the heel?
He staggers to , unable to stand still when you walk on stilts, you have to move all the time. January Unesson has gone on stilts before, but then it has been a different type. These require training, but now it’s really good when he steps around the room.
Employees of the suit and the workshop is here and check, how do the pants to be, a little further perhaps as not to foot seen?
Back on the main stage is a giant toadstool revealed himself as a backdrop. It is the repetition of the scene where Alice meets the caterpillar. Carina Boberg puffs on his long nozzle. Anna Pettersson gets up on stage and going through the motions again.
She is satisfied with the development of the show and says that now one can see the meaningful portrayed, that which is beyond the replicas.
– of course you always want to have more time, but I’m not stressed.
On today’s program also stands the test of burning hat and sabrage (open champagne with a saber). What finally brings in the show are not clear yet.
– I love the details, but overall I hope will be a story about the man in change. Sweden is no longer a small country untouched in a corner of the north, now we have to be changing, says Anna Pettersson.
Tuesday, March 8. Three weeks left.
Carina Boberg has played the last performance of The best in man, now, the entire working hours devoted to Alice in Wonderland, it feels good for it a demanding process.
– Now we must stay calm. All productions have a phase of frustration, before you get the tools to be able to throw out and find your way back. It looks different every time.
This time, when the starting point is an absurd story disassembled and built with the foundation of improvisation, the challenge is to find solid ground.
– it may feel as if you do not have a mat to stand on. We create the show together on a plane, but at the same time the director’s vision to be reconciled with what we improvise. It can sometimes be difficult to talk about.
There is another way to work compared to roles where there is a complete script with a process from A to Z to lean on.
– Then I can sit at home and reflect on my character development. It is easier to know where you are going.
Kålmaskens expression she found early, but they are at different stages with different situations, she said.
– It’s funny when to find the building blocks that give ideas to go ahead. There may be a step to take on a special way. It happened in an improvisation, we found an entrance to the whole scene, it could be about bullying. One step gave an association.
When there is a frame that is also where the carpet to stand on.
– Then you get something more concrete to violate. Hopefully you can then improvise on the basis of a solid structure.
Many thoughts must be cooked up to a performance, the question is how it should be told and what parallels are to today’s society.
– just as Alice has been difficult to find in life, we have hard to find answers. We live in a fragmented time. One could say that Alice in Wonderland is a symptom of it. She asks questions that do not get answers. No one answers her which way she should go. A frustrating position to be in. When you find her mat doing springboard from? When to affect his life?
Carina Boberg yearn to theater magic to interfere in the stark reality.
– We will invite Alice Sagan’s fantasies and give associations to the absurd reality of the world we live in.
Less than two weeks left.
the trip to Wonderland