| Rehearsal Diary

Week Three

Technically classified as a ‘play with songs’ rather than a musical, Privates features eleven numbers in total. There are lots of brilliantly witty and moving songs for the cast to learn – with wonderful music written by composer Denis King – but also lots of choreography to get to grips with, created by Ben Wright.

Michael cast the play with the primary focus on acting ability, rather than singing or dancing skills. We therefore have a group of actors who can sing and dance, rather than singers and dancers who can act, so Ben has his work cut out to get the best dancing out of the cast.

actors during theatre rehearsals
Privates on Parade rehearsals

He’s an infectiously fun and motivated choreographer, creating ambitious and physically demanding routines. In week three it’s difficult to see if it’s all going to come together, as the hard-working cast are struggling to get every step down. But Ben has faith in the cast and himself and, like the soldiers, he is drilling his recruits to their limits, never letting their heads drop.