Daniel Day-Lewis: A Curse to Rehearse

PlayBlog   Daniel Day-Lewis: A Curse to Rehearse
 
"There's a luxury that happens when you do a musical film, and that is: you have to rehearse," says "Nine" director Rob Marshall. "We had six weeks of rehearsals and two weeks of pre-recording. It was during that time that we created a company." Marshall didn't know it til the "Nine" press conference, but he almost lost his leading man when he talked like that.


Daniel Day-Lewis readily confesses that such talk "initially made me step backwards because I don't tend to rehearse, I don't really like to rehearse, and I couldn't understand how you could go through eight weeks of rehearsal without exhausting every possibility to the point where it was just mind-gasping on the floor.

"The first musical number I remember listening to was Fergie's 'Be Italian.' It was a fairly early stage of rehearsal, and I just thought, 'We might as well just go home now,' because it was magnificent then — and we still had six weeks of rehearsal left."

Gradually, little by little, Day-Lewis began to see the error of his ways. "It's been a long time since I worked in the theatre, but one of the things I most loved about the theatre has to do with the bond of trust that forms between a group of strangers.

"It was really that period of time during rehearsals where I felt that work was done, not just with the music — the discipline of doing the music and all the dancing as well — but really just forming those bonds of trust that you need to have so you can then live close to the edge of anarchy, which is where most creative work happens.

"The thing about rehearsals — and again in relation to the trust — is that you make complete fools of yourselves during that process. You have to be allowed to do that — and it was very early on in that period of time that we had to do things as unself-consciously as possible which we knew were going to be difficult in front of each other. Once you've done that, it clears the way a bit and doesn't really matter anymore whether you’re a fool or not. You have to be able to be a fool."

— Harry Haun

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