Rehearsals began at 8:30 a.m. this morning and ended at 10:00 p.m., which is roughly the schedule for the next four weeks, five days a week, with a slightly shorter schedule on Sundays. Henry IV in the morning, Complete History in the afternoon, and Guys & Dolls at night (I've been cast as Lt. Brannigan--the only character in the show who doesn't sing... thank god.)
It's like grad school... but not.
The acting ranges in effectiveness from high-quality community theater to first-rate regional professional. Principle players are all pretty good. Two or three of the featured players are also excellent. Smaller roles are filled by college students, many of whom don't have much experience with Shakespeare but are good in Guys & Dolls. The BIGGEST and most welcome difference in my experience here from community and community/'professional' theater I've done in the past is that, here, the company is committed. Everyone does the work.
I like that.
The people who run this place are as friendly and supportive as you can find, as well. I like that, too.