I’m extremely proud of the work that Ithaca Shakespeare did this year to present Comedy of Errors and Romeo & Juliet as livestreamed virtual performances. Choreographing remote fights was challenging, and lacked the thrill of seeing the performers feed off of each others’ energy in the way that they can in-person, but it forced me to think more creatively about how we could still incorporate physicality into genuinely live shows.
For R&J, we presented the combat through shadow-puppetry, which was my first time advising an artist in that medium on swordplay. The results make up in tension and visual starkness for what they lack in speed/verisimilitude.
The physical comedy and slapstick humor that Comedy of Errors invites required significant modifications, partly due to the performers’ limited visibility on camera, and partly because they often had to look in a direction where they could not see their conversation/fight partner. We fixed the moments of action to verbal cues in the line more rigidly than I ordinarily would have, and I think the results are more than satisfactory.
Get tickets at the link below, and support local theater! https://www.brownpapertickets.com/producer/4517463