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Sonnet 1 by Ben Calman
By Ben Calman
What words shall I speak to paint gratitude
Immeasurable? To tongue a curt thanks
Would be not but a cunting platitude;
Yet when I seek words, I draw naught but blanks.
We are in a wondrous situation
Where through our efforts we have exceeded
Hence insurmountable limitations
All thanks to you, as I have conceded
Forever I will hold you in my heart,
Think of you every time I am on stage
Even if we should sadly grow apart
When in th’book of life we o’er turn next page
Pillowman is o’er, and though our hearts rend,
Remember: Even when it is over,
It never truly ends.


First Preview, Pillowgang.

2/28 Run Notes

-       Need a stronger light for house speech – wasn’t sure when to go.
-       Bucket needs to be moved back about 2 squares.
-       Forrest needs to brace the door. Or someone else if he’s stuck in makeup.
-       SOUND: level a little too high.
-       A: that lolli chomp. That hand tension. You’re present.
-       K: great gesticular work.
-       T: good diction – keep workin.
-       T: laugh before “should I have” was great.
-       Kaitlin, Skye, Janae, Harry, Sam…all y’all are the best.
-       T: lost “highwayman”
-       Marissa: movement needs to transfer from dreamy disposition to you sitting down. We lost your character behavior.
-       Abigail: during whisper, start a few feet away, get closer and closer as your whisper is revealed.
-       T: make sure blazer is clean of dirt/dust before going onstage.
-       Blocking got muddy, toes need to stay on table. Y’all know what went wrong.
-       K – react to door being slammed behind T

- Quieter transition. Move table closer to door and farther from moving wall.
- LIGHTS: Are the lights going off Ben here or should he be waiting? Lights are waiting for stage to be cleared, Ben, wait for Forrest to leave, then lights will go up.
- SOUND: take down, ben had to yell.
- SET: scrim was really squeaky…can we fix that?
- A/M – great great work. Really stepped it up with an audience.
- K take a beat before deciding to rip it up there.
- A/M – be entering 5 seconds earlier.
- M – you can draw out your smothering a little longer.
- SM/LIGHTS: longer beat before blackout.

- K/M – blocking got muddy after hug.
- K – little too much hop in the injury walk tonight.
- K/M – run “jesus Michal” hug.
- Martin – quieter feet as Pillowman. Great physicality. Great inspection of the willow tree.
- M – the yapping gets me every time…
- Martin / Susannah – wave with upstage hands.
- Stories – move slowly, close to the back of the stage for exit.
- M/K – go over lines. You missed/skewered some.
- Great energy
- head smash was smashing aaaaaaaaaahahaha.
- M – completely lost “MEANEST thing I’ve ever heard.”
- M – head towards room, feet towards wall (cheating out your body so we don’t lose your head).
- SOUND – a little quieter. Same with rain. Slower fade into silence.

- SM: Lights needs to wait for Michal
- K: you know. The line.
- SOUND: level needs to be taken DOWN.
- Susannah – go to sit and pray (for sandals to be taken) a line earlier.
- K: I know the sound is frustrating but don’t let it affect your performance.
- S: react to the crown of thorns being placed on head.
- M: remember your cue for pushing Sus. Is ‘buckles”
- K: great timing for the bit where the parents must go upstairs
- S/M/A – be aware that the tree is flimsy.
- Forrest: good cross.
- You guys are champs.

-       SOUND could be lower.
-       PROPS: electrodes?
-       A: great work with monologue, don’t work yourself up too much. Find its arc.
-       SET/PROPS: could we paint the box that the camera is mounted upon the color of the back wall? I want the camera to pop more.
-       T: you work off an audience well: it served your monologue. Just remember your diction. Cheat out.
-       SOUND: the last minute was too loud. Great transition back into the room though (fade)
-       T: you’re drunker at work today than usual…?
-       A: the matter? Wrong?
-       A: don’t unzip jumpsuit that far. No boxers seen by audience. That’s a different play.
-       K: your reaction after Maria left was wonderful. I loved it.
-       A: thanks for cleaning up stage space in character behavior. Made sense.
-       T “traipsed across my floor”…we need to cut or tweak this.
-       **point out camera to anyone who is supposed to look at it.
-       T: remember to cock gun.
-       SOUND: gun shot even louder.
-       T: fix collar of blazer.
-       K: take a step stage Right when you get up (sight lines for A)

-       door knocking
-       diction, projection
-       stepping on others’ lines. GO THROUGH YOUR SCRIPTS.


2/27 Run Notes


Act 1, Scene 1 (8:15)
-       CAMERA – talk to Ari
-       A – nice gun reveal, make it more visible to audience (cheat out)
-       Follow through of bucket – remember detectives to cheat out so ben’s line isn’t blocked.
-       T – “of what to what” you were completely blocking Declan – don’t come downstage of table if someone is behind it.
-       K – I love that you stay in the position T moves you to for “peripherals”
-       K – great first duty monologue pacing, think about volume shifts a little more
-       Sound levels were awesome.
-       T “for funny READ stupid fucking idiots”
-       A – great with toe box before “this writer”
-       T – you looked out at me…I saw it.
-       A – great work, build. Don’t choke – make sure crosses are meaningful. Eye gouge line up looked a little less realistic than usual.
-       K - I heard the capsule burst – just make sure you are aware. Blood placement was much better.
-       Martin – swallow apple with upstage hand. The hand hold with Marissa during death was great. Marissa use upstage hand as well.
-       K – you can wipe face with blindfold.
-       K – I saw you look out at us…”anything against jews or you or…”
-       T – great “do you think we’re animals”
-       K – cheat out more on bucket “eyes go ahead and say something”
-       T – take a little more time with jokes (same moment as above)
-       Puzzle without a solution – new blocking was great (back towards T)
-       T – great job with 3 gibbet
-       T – watch diction on “sick fucking scummy cunt” – you can place a brief pause before the “noooo”
-       *BRING IN STRAIGHTENER (for ben)
-       Marissa: great facial expressions, feel free to commit even more (stories are very brechtian)
-       Abigail – don’t take sandwich until after head nod.
-       Abigail – let’s try a slot slide down towards Marissa’s face on whispered monologue.
-       Abigail – you can play with laughin through your body after toes are cut off.
-       K – great “he brought the rats”
-       T – place box down on table delicately.
-       K – you hear him scream…you’ve heard it before. Muscle memory.
-       Blocking felt weird and circulatory around “where’s the 3rd child?”
-       T – watch diction when you use your head voice.
-       K – lovely hand tension.
-       A – “you want to see him” – felt especially cat and mouse today. Great around this area.
-       K – reaction to toes? Let’s try putting them down immediately, looking at toes from table, out of your hands.
-       K – noises while being forced to swallow. Great follow through, I like you moving backward and out to audience.
-       Keep them toes on the table if possible
-       K – “then I best go get the electrodes” – let this moment settle into your face. Don’t pick anything up for transition, just move to space and wait for light.

Act 1, Scene 2 (8:50-9:01)
-       Quicken transition…quieter
-       K – use your pen
-       A – great energy – look at Kat after tying him up.
-       A/M – manipulate him even more – B – fight or be manipulated.
-       A/M – enjoy your exit after blood written note.
-       K – great eye contact with audience. I love it.
-       A/M – ham even more. You are both just so good. The door slide on you is great…this is your moment to get even more maniacal. You are really aweful.
-       WHAT THE FUCK.
-       Great sitting cross legged.
-       A/M – come out a sentence earlier “final part of parent’s experiment”.
-       K – cheat out when you tap the shoulder.

Act 2, Scene 1 (9:15)
-       M – sets during blackout.
-       Too much blood.
-       K – good wiping, a little less into M’s crotch though.
-       M – try to wiggle out of him on your leg.
-       K/M – really great beat work
-       K – I love the shmutz rub on M’s face.
-       M – again, lovely reaction to toes reveal.
-       Blocking got fucked on “no” game.
-       K – wait to say “jesus Michal” until you pull out of hug.
-       K – let’s do a hop shuffle for your walk – we’ll go over it.
-       K “depends on the ass” – awesome. Enjoyed it as K, not as B.
-       F – cheat out for placing of Pillowman a little more.
-       K – make sure the nine feet tall arm gesture doesn’t block your light.
-       M – inspect your body in moments where you don’t have things to do.
-       Ladies – great lean.
-       S – great variation of adult to child on the spin.
-       S/M – move downstage a little more.
-       A – great look down to K/M,
-       M – try to whisper to Abigail.
-       M – hide behind tree and watch what happens to Marissa.
-       M – watch during interruption (M)
-       M – careful of your knees when you fall to them.
-       M – crying – this can be exaggerated in your back.
-       M – great work moving the “little car”
-       S – can you make the “little footsteps” from the caravan?
-       M/S – kaleidoscope moment is great.
-       S – wave goodbye after you are positioned on tree.
-       M/S – stay at tree until “itchy ass” bit. Neutral bodies.
-       M – I loved the sniffer dogs action
-       K – great “you swore to me on your life”
-       M – I love the pauses in your speech, just tighten them up a little.
-       M – great job finding the “opposites” thing.
-       K – head smash follow through was impeccable. You’re on fire tonight.
-       M – I love the look to the blood before “just like mom and dad”
-       M – face more out to audience after head smash…you are doing such great work, let us see it.
-       M – good itchy ass follow through.
-       K – “why that one/where’d you leave her” so matter of fact, so spot on.
-       K  - don’t move pillow second time to placement on wall…I don’t think you would care for extra comfort in that moment.
-       M – great “meanest thing” – it felt like you weren’t at home in your body.
-       M lost “bone to pick with you”
-       M – great breath.
-       K – jump on “literary advice”
-       M – watch the stomping. Its good, but not too much.
-       Rain? Little Green Pig ending before smothering.

Act 2, Scene 2 (10:10)
-       Can we get a light on Katurian for “once upon a time”
-       Great energy for this
-       M/A – hold on to ends of scarf
-       K – how the hell do you do this transition? I’m in awe.
-       Sound levels a little lower
-       M/A great looks of disgust.
-       S – I’d love to see more “scared” little jesus, more martyr.
-       M/A – run simultaneous lines.
-       We’ll work through the timing.
-       S – walk offstage injured
-       S – you can yell in agony like in your essence piece – silently
-       M/A – remember to hit your light mark for TV.
-       M/A – projection
-       Michal – you came on too early, take more time to wake across stage, you are quite blind, remember.
-       S – remember to open your eyes on “forest”

Act 3, Scene 1 (10:18)
-       tighten transition/quieter.
-       A – I love the shirt pull on “write quicker”
-       T – let’s run the gun check – I think we can do more with it.
-       Sound levels were a little high
-       Move little jesus sandals.
-       T – knock before “pick up the body”
-       A – the glance with eyebrows at “killed mother and father” – only do it once (you did a double)
-       A – lost “defense in court”, there was also some excess movement.
-       A – great pacing of monologue, watch your hand movements.
-       A – you spit. You’re doing it right.
-       T – your “heyyyyy…before I murdered my dad” – was so feigned sympathetic. So perfect. So nasty.
-       T – we lost “little mute girl”
-       T – I don’t know how to feel about the nose flick.
-       A – I like the partial exit before “thanks babe”
-       T – you moving the electrodes works really well.
-       T – “detect” speech….hitting your marks, taking your time, finding your cues. Great.
-       T – “worlddddd view” – we lost the d.
-       K – I saw you connect eyes with me. Don’t!
-       T – start to monologue was flawless. Perfect timing.
-       T – lost “as if often the case with DEAF BOYS”
-       T – slow down just a little, you’ll lose fewer words.
-       SOUND: slower fade on investigation room music, couldn’t hear the train on cue for a long time. Can we start the level higher?
-       T – I think you can find more moments to pause for dramatic effect.
-       K – Cut off Tupolski. T – make sure to have a continued sentence.
-       SOUND: Anyway… (back into the story, pull in sound effect)
-       T – let’s work on movement towards K at final reveal of story.
-       SOUND: weird transition, too slow.
-       T/A – let’s fix up hair during intermission.
-       T – “unless its like your case” lost.
-       K – continue to love your reactions to T’s answers about story.
-       T – let’s work on reaction to him taking your pen.
-       T – watch words when you speed up.
-       T – move on “its almost a shame” so you are behind him when talking about shooting him in the head.
-       T – “there was something about the pman” – great cadence work.
-       T – hit “son drowned” even harder.
-       T – lost “pony”
-       K – I missed you putting your head on the table.
-       T – “3 little kids you murdered” lost it.
-       A – arm fully extended for hair grab so you don’t hit him with gun.
-       T – great putting away of pen after “your witness”.  Flacid.
-       T – make sure not to show audience interior of trash can – it will have lights in them.
-       Ariel’s speech – you are all standing on the same plane – diversify, please.
-       K – watch to your hood kneel was devastating.
-       T – drop into knees with gun.
-       SOUND: louder on gun noise.
-       T – follow through of shot. Recoil.
-       K – no, ben. That’s not how dead bodies behave.
-       M – wait to set yourself until Katurian begins to move.
-       M – you can watch Kat narrate your final story.
-       M – play more with the plane, more sway.
-       LIGHT: slower fade on Michal?


2/17 - Act 3 Run

(Start 4:36 – 5:28)
-       T: great articulation at top of scene – hold it.
-       T “what” after acted out little jesus line (A) – don’t let it be lost.
-       K – when you hear the click of the holster, look up at him – you’ve consistently missed this moment.
-       A – your face looked worn when you were reading the stories
-       A – “why odes there have to be people like you” – good whisper, but more supported, articulate
-       K “could you beat me up” – more urgent, then settle.
-       A – longer beat before “you killed your parents?”
-       A – questions to K about parents, inquisitive, curious, you are contrasting your expereiences with K
-       A – bring box up onto bed, put in your lap to sort through instead of back to audience.
-       A – longer beat after “they will not get away with it”, find your beats, volume levels at start.
-       “Little kids” – A – fourth wall is diminished, this is your dream.
-       K “and who…” – the voice sounds false in this moment, it can be accusatory without being performed
-       T – “already murdered him of course” – give A a beat after to get up and laugh.
-       A & T – wonderful dynamic.
-       T – leaning on desk during “commandante” speech is flawless.
-       K – good guilt whenever you are mentioned killing kids
-       T – projection/articulation got beter
-       A – if you are being blocked by Tupolski, move yourself
-       T – or was she dead” – don’t raise pen until you get an answer from K, great to direct to A
-       T – sit on desk was great.
-       T – click on “I (click click) am a detective” – wonderful.
-       T That pen is your wand!
-       T – take beat to think up “maybe its ahead of its time”
-       K great reactions to T’s story.
-       T “the world is beneath him” take that moment for yourself
-       T – great story. Great.
-       T – watch posture when you lean forward, don’t hunch too much.
-       T _ hang on – vicious, ferocious, he TOOK YOUR PEN. Push from stomach voice.
-       T – watch downstage arm blocking you when you tower over Kat.
-       T – you cross behind K after “shooting in head in 20” you looked at his head like you were assessing your shot…great.
-       T – don’t make eye contact with Kat when you’re explaining why you like the Pillowman story. Take your time.
-       “son drowned.”
-       T – bring box up to you sitting, or don’t lost yourself so much in box.
-       K – do you do it out of the blue – great stumbling through this. Really good work in this scene with your focus.
-       A – remember to rotate hips out for hair pull
-       K – great reaction to Maria, especially when T catches you being happy.
-       T – “commandante” point to camera is great.
-       K – wait a beat before saying “I never knew about any of this before today”
-       A – sitting “you’re witness”
-       A – great moment after “thank you”. This is a big moment for you
-       T – we lost “burn” with trash smash.
-       T – love the bucket lean.
-       K – “ariel”
-       K – hand tension
-       K – good lean on table.
-       A – stage whisper work
-       A – can you find a moment to replace electrodes to clear the stage.
-       A – T lies and lies and puts K through more than he needs to. Is this a partial reason saving the stories? Why why why
-       A – I love the passing of the jacket.
-       K – take in Ariel being onstage with you.
-       K – let’s work final monologue.
-       “in a cold prison cell”
-       A – listening to Michal?