Friday, August 7, 2009

Pew Choreography

A few of my friends are in rehearsals for The King and I and I've noticed some facebook comments regarding the fact that they have to kneel for extended time period and their knees are complaining.

I've seen the movie- it's about this Siamese king with many wives and even more children who hires a sassy English teacher for the kids. (Sort of like an Asian version of the Sound of Music with polygamy.) The bald headed king marches around with his arms crossed over his buff chest. (Sort of like how my husband describes the Golds Gym locker room without the singing.)

I have a lot of empathy for my friends, and hope they wear knee pads under their costumes. That should help. Kneeling for extended periods of time is difficult, especially if you're not Catholic.

I have a lot of kneeling experience and am very pleased to share the following pew strageties that I've developed over a lifetime of attending Catholic church.

The 1st, and easiest move is what I call the 'Shuffle Knee'. You start out by distributing your weight evenly between both knees. After a while, you lift one knee at a time to give the other a break. If you keep your body perpendicular to the floor - and don't lean over in agony - this should be every effective on stage.

The 'Butt Plie' works quite well if your Mom's not kneeling next to you. In this move you very slowly ease your butt back toward the pew bench. (This move was never successful for me when I was growing up, since my Mother had pew radar, in addition to eyes on all sides of her head.) Since I don't believe there will be a bench on the set, this move will probably not work.

Another popular kneeler move is what I call the 'Heel Squat' which involves shrinking down to sit on your heels while maintaining your height. Again, this move was never effective for me as a child, but I've observed its success numerous time with other lucky kneelers - especially if the father was in charge.

This move would have to be carefully choreographed on stage, but could be especially effective if the actors were of varying heights while kneeling, and were not adjacent to each other. Yes! I think it could work!

Here's some sample Lou Pew choroegrahy:

'Getting to know you' (Becca Heel Sqaut Down (HSD))
'Getting to know all about you'
'Getting to know you' (Becca: HSU; Ruth:HSD)
'Getting to like you'
'Getting to hope you like me' (Ruth: HSU; Laura HSD)

Et-cetera, Et-cetera, Et-cetera.

And if the cast needs some extra practice, they can join me at 10:30 mass any Sunday!

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