Today was a very special day which saw us performing the last two shows of Brass. I feel rather empty and bereft as a result and would love to take a day off tomorrow. Or at least have a lie-in. The fact of the matter is that I'm in the studio recording a demo at 11am tomorrow. There's no rest for the wicked.
It's difficult to think how today could have gone any better. Great audiences. The cast were marvellous. The last performance was particularly astounding. The orchestra play out, led by Alex, Zach, Stef and John, was electrifying. The audiences ran to the front of the auditorium to look into the pit whilst cheering and clapping, before forcing the band to play it all again. I looked up to find the entire circle dancing. It was a joyous and wonderful sight.
There were one or two hairy moments. The matinee went up late, with the pre-show starting five minutes after the show was meant to start, which meant the audience sat in silence watching something which was meant to be ticking away as they walked to their seats.
There was a terrible sound cue in the middle of a hugely intimate scene featuring Alf and Tom. I'm not sure what the sound effect was meant to be. Bird song perhaps? But actually what we got was the sound of a shell explosion which was so loud that it made Oscar and Ben physically jump into the air.
At the end of the matinee there was an incident in the wings involving a great amount of vomit which apparently had the cast running for cover. By the time we'd dealt with all of that and I'd written cards for all the cast, it was time to start all over again. It was a highly stressful break as a result and I didn't manage to eat any food which meant I ended the night with a lack-of-food-induced headache.
We had drinks in the pub next door after the show. It was loud, hot and rather claustrophobic, but lovely to see this year's cast mixing with the last lot, who'd come to support the show. I felt very strongly tonight that there's a Brass family. Once you've joined the team for any part of the show's journey, you become part of this ever-growing clan. It did feel very strange, however, to have two Bickerdykes and two Wilfreds in the same bar. I can't imagine how odd it most have felt for them to be watching the show. So familiar and yet so unfamiliar.