Written by Richard Tong

The thick snow blanketing Cambridge two weeks ago might have brought the city to a stop, but it could not stop HRG&SP’s The Sorcerer from getting underway. Both the cast and the orchestra of The Sorcerer carried on, undeterred by the cold, wind, and occasional thunder and lightning.

After our sing-through, cast rehearsals began in earnest. The highlight of the week was the Sunday rehearsal which spanned almost all members of the cast. These few hours not only allowed us to rehearse the choral numbers Ring Forth Ye Bells and All is Prepared, magnificent though they are in their own right; they also provided a wonderful opportunity for the cast to get to know each other. If the bonding that’s happened so far is any indication, this semester’s show will be as good as it ever gets. By happy accident, we also discovered a beautiful alto harmony that was printed only in the conductor’s score, and have written it back into the operetta.

Our first orchestra rehearsal was also a great success even though a football game of some description was, I am informed, being broadcast concurrently. We are delighted to welcome a cohort of talented new musicians to our orchestra, and are happy to see so many dedicated orchestra members returning to play with us. Perhaps the most entertaining moments of the rehearsal occurred during the introductions—the icebreaker question was “what instrument, other than yours, would you like to play.” Almost half the orchestra went for oboes or bassoons, a fact which we could only laugh off, given the perennial shortage of double reeded instruments.

While both cast and orchestra were keeping busy, the staff of The Sorcerer was not resting on its laurels either. At our second production meeting of the semester, we had our set design presentation, discussed logistics of everything from sewing to poster design, and made and shared an avalanche of google calendar appointments. While everything is under wraps now, it is safe to say that everything is very promising.

The staff, cast and orchestra of The Sorcerer continue to work hard on the show. Stay tuned in future weeks for more updates.

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