Today, the cast and creative team of Tom Dudzick‘s comedy Miracle on South Division Street assembled at Geva for their first rehearsal. We all got a look at the scenic and costume designs that will help create the familiar-looking world of a deteriorating Buffalo, NY neighborhood; then, the cast sat down to read the play aloud together for the first time.
Well, almost. One member of the cast, Geva favorite Peggy Cosgrave, was missing, due to an illness that prevented her from traveling to Rochester yesterday. Assistant Stage Manager Stephie Kesselring bravely filled in for her in the read-through. She did a lovely job, of course, but there’s no replacing Peggy – not just because she’s a great comedic actress, but because she is pretty much THE expert on the character of Clara Nowak, whom she played in the world premiere of Miracle and in several later productions.
Tomorrow, Laura Gragtmans (playing Ruth) and Colin Ryan (playing Jimmy) will be back in the rehearsal hall, blocking the beginning of the play with director Pamela Hunt. The very beginning is an especially good place to start in this case, since Peggy’s character doesn’t appear onstage until a few pages in. Nevertheless, we certainly hope she’s feeling better and able to join us soon!