“No-o-o-o-o!” shouted Cherry. “Stop adding stuff! Just walk in, belt the guy, and walk out! Is that so hard?” Given most actors’ training, Libby recalls, this exercise ranked among the toughest.

But it prepared her for what she calls “the invisible line” in Request between the “actorly” and the unadorned. In rehearsals she and director Glenn Paris squelched every theatrical impulse. Lately, however, she’s moving away from the line. During a performance she went from one section of the play to the next and couldn’t remember how she got there. “Total blackout. I stopped thinking. Spooky.”

In her most recent performances, Libby confesses to an out-of-body experience. “Honestly, when I’m in the moment of the play, I have looked, and sometimes what I see is unexpected. I lose a sense that I’m onstage — me, Libby. Miss Rasch has entered the room.”

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