At the beginning of the rehearsal period one of the exercises Lilo found most useful was an improvisation in which the company created the city of Venice.
Transcript of Podcast
At the beginning of the rehearsal period one of the exercises Lilo found most useful was an improvisation in which the company created the city of Venice. Each person adopted a role and explored what the city might have been like in the 16th Century. They also looked at the possible relationships between the groups that might have existed in that society and the status of women and the Jewish community. Lilo found that as a women in this improvisation she spent much of her time standing on a balcony waiting for people to come by to talk to her, she did not have the opportunity to leave her house and to explore Venice for herself.
To work on her character Lilo is trying to do as much research as possible, she is currently reading Shylock by John Gross.
Lilo has worked a great deal with Theatre de Complicite, which have a tradition of physical theatre, drawing on Commedia dell’ Arte. This experience influences Lilo's approach to creating the role of Jessica. Lilo is particularly interested in the way in which Jessica elopes with Lorenzo, for her, Jessica's most wicked action is the theft of her mother's ring, rather than the elopement itself.
Lilo feels that Jessica's actions are very much those of a young women who has fallen in love and is longing for greater freedom. Jessica is left alone in the house for long periods of time, all she has for company is Launcelot Gobbo. Lilo feels that Jessica has no privacy and wants to escape from the claustrophobic atmosphere of her father's house. After Jessica escapes it is not possible for her to go back to Venice – she and Lorenzo have to find a new place to live.
These comments are the actor's thoughts or ideas about the part as s/he goes through the rehearsal process – they are simply his/her own interpretations and frequently change as the rehearsal process progresses.