A major portion of my activity in Act 2 involves running across the stage. One pass is a hurried run but enjoyably lopy; the second pass is a full-out 50 meter dash. The stage directions include the phrase "beating the Olympic speed record" or somesuch. You will probably agree with me that a 200+ pound gentleman beating the Olympic speed record at anything besides, say, falling over, will indeed generate quite a bit of comedy.
My first few run-throughs happened yesterday. I haven't run so much onstage since I played Teddy in Arsenic & Old Lace. That run, charging up the stairs of "San Juan Hill", proved very precarious as our two-story set, of course, wasn't fully finished off. Once I dashed up the steps, crossed the balcony and ducked behind a partition, the floor disappeared. There was one crossbeam that, provided I hit it right, let me skip across the scaffolding to a small platform where one of the techs usually hung out. After the first few full runs I felt comfortable on it, but every time I blew that damn bugle and hollered "CHAAAAAAAAAARGE!" I always entertained some small notion in my mind that I'd run full-tilt up the steps, miss the crossbeam, and plummet down into the Panama Canal. It's that fear that really helps drive the spontaneity of a performance, I believe.
Right now my run across the stage for You Can't Take It With You isn't as precarious, as I stay pretty much on ground level the entire time, but owing to the stage setup, it's no less dangerous. The inner foyer and "front door" dangle off stage right, and there's a sharp 90 degree turn to the right so you can get backstage after disappearing into the foyer. My runs go from back stage left all the way to this foyer, then thru the front door. It's gonna be hard to stop and make that 90-degree turn. In fact, yesterday, when I ran, I decided not to let up, and slammed full-on into the house wall. With my arms outstretched.
The upshot of this is that I pulled something very nicely in my left bicep. I can feel the pull when I extend the arm out, or if I bend my arm as if I was leaning on something. Like I just did. Ooh, but it's a cleansing pain. And never let it be said a Noyes doesn't suffer for his art.