2. Diffuse Your Rehearsal

For the past month, I’ve been in rehearsal for Julius Caesar. We’ve created a dystopian environment, taking the story to future environment containing a planet ruined by climate change and warfare. Our space that we’re rehearsing and performing in is a converted lecture hall built in the 1970s. Like many theatre venues, it has a long history of blood, sweat, tears…. and dust.

In addition to that, theatres often don’t have natural light; I’ll often walk outside of an afternoon rehearsal and be surprised by the sunlight. Creating theatre from an empty, dark space affects our emotional state, it’s easy to get weighted down by the darkness surrounding our empty space. And, this era we’re in right now is tough. It’s not just the course work for the students, we’re in a very uncertain political, economic, and global time. We’re all stressed and nervous about the future. With that in mind, I aimed to alter the atmosphere of our rehearsal room.

A week into rehearsal, I brought in a diffuser. Since we’re working in a large room, it runs throughout our full rehearsal. Actors can stop by the director table, take a few breaths and then return to their work. It’s a nice escape from the dust, discarded set pieces, and industrial aspects of our rehearsal space.

I’ve created blends for specific purposes, the actors have the opportunity to pick the diffusion for that particular night. Each of the tiny bottles in the picture carries around 25 drops, so we get around 5 uses out of each synergy. It is delightful to pipe out drops and smell each aroma in the room:

JOY: Grapefruit, Bergamot, Lavender

MEDITATE: Frankincense, Rose, Sweet Orange

IMMUNITY (to clear pathogens): Lemon, Eucalyptus, Ylang Ylang

CALM (Relieve stress): Rose, Vetiver, Frankincense

AWAKE: Peppermint, Lavender, Grapefruit, Tangerine

I personally prefer anything that is anti-microbial… as rehearsals also seem to encourage the common cold.

Shelby Hibbs