After years in the making, the cast, crew, and creatives working on Middle Child’s hip-hop family musical There Should Be Unicorns began rehearsals!
What has long only been a thing of imagination finally became a reality last week as theatre-makers piled into Hull and made their way down to Middle Child HQ to begin the countdown to the show premiere at Hull’s own Stage @ the Dock on 7th May.
To kick off the week (and celebrate the fact that everyone could finally be in the same room together), introductions commenced.
In true Jasmine Littlehorse fashion, Middle Child CEO and co-director Paul Smith asked us to express our hopes for this production. Some hoped to inspire confidence in the children coming to watch the show, whereas others hoped to look back at this production and be proud of what we had all created together.
And with that, the script came to life. A table read, guided by the talented cast gave us a first complete read through of the script in the characters own voices.
Rough cuts of the songs co-written by Paul smith and members of the Beats Bus, David Okwesia, Kobby Taylor, and Steve ‘Redeye’ Arnott, and co-composers James Frewer and Kobby Taylor, were played as the script was read and the ball was officially rolling on There Should Be Unicorns.
The first week of rehearsals was dedicated exclusively to this music. Alongside teaching the cast their parts, re-writes and edits were made to elevate these songs into their final-form, super incarnations.
The stage management team transformed Middle Child’s former ‘Zoom room’ into an in-house studio where existing raps were workshopped, chopped up and put back together all week long.
Working in chronological order each song was learned, rehearsed and performed to piece in the foundations of There Should Be Unicorns to build on as rehearsals continue.
Co-director Maureen Lennon got to grips with the performers during their character workshops, delving into the characters and getting to know them as well as we have all been getting to know each other here in the rehearsal room.
The week ended with a sitzprobe – a rehearsal designated to bringing the music and the singers together for the first time in a production process.
Everyone together watched the cast run through the musical numbers as finished songs ready to begin the staging and movement work in the coming weeks.