Author Topic: MORALE: Birthday cakes  (Read 6316 times)

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oldjoedrummond

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MORALE: Birthday cakes
« on: Jan 23, 2005, 09:19 pm »
Having just spent over $100 of my own money on birthday cakes for actors birthdays that fell during the production, I was wondering if anyone has any clever ways of dealing with this issue. I have been told it's the stage managers responsibility to provide cakes but management doesn't pay for this expense.
« Last Edit: Jun 08, 2009, 10:17 pm by PSMKay »
Joseph H. Drummond

jpz

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Birthday cakes
« Reply #1 on: Jan 24, 2005, 01:12 am »
Hmm... interesting. I can't say I've ever come across a situation where it's SM responsibility to provide b-day cakes. (It is indeed very nice of you to do it, and a nice touch.)  In my experience, either the company has paid for a cake, or cast members have bought cakes for each other.

If you want to continue organizing it (and feel the actors want it to continue), and mgmt won't pay for it, perhaps you could start a "birthday fund"... getting a little bit of money from everyone in the cast.

casper

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« Reply #2 on: Jan 24, 2005, 10:57 am »
Buy one cake for all birthdays during that month or get/make cupcakes/brownies.  There is rarelly any left over and it is much cheaper.  I like the birthday fund as well.

ERK

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« Reply #3 on: Jan 24, 2005, 12:02 pm »
AND claim it on your taxes!

loebtmc

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Birthday cakes
« Reply #4 on: Jan 24, 2005, 12:40 pm »
With larger casts, we were always able to get a birthday fund for cakes and cards (which, I might add, are much cheaper and can easily be passed around backstage). In smaller casts, the company always paid for it, and whether we got a cake for the month or individual ones depended on the # of bdays and the length of the run. Of course, I always got birthdays in my emergency info sheet, so I had the master calendar by the first week of reh and could let the office know so they could decide if they wanted to handle it - always gave them first refusal cuz hey, if they want to pay for it, I am happy to let them!

avkid

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Birthday cakes
« Reply #5 on: Jan 24, 2005, 09:00 pm »
Cupcakes and cards are usually acceptable unless you are close to the person.
Philip LaDue
Shore Production Group LLC
IATSE Local #21 Newark, NJ

lejenna

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« Reply #6 on: Jan 25, 2005, 08:34 pm »
I like the idea of baby-ing casts, and making birthdays extra special, but it's free if you sing the birthday song, and most people really just want things to be acknowledged.  If you're buying cakes for this run, then you set a precedent and it will become an expectation for all other runs.  Also, how many birthdays were there and did you buy cakes or bake them?  (Cake mix goes on sale for $2.00 a box at Safeway....)  You can also establish a new tradition of "It's your birthday, bring your favorite treat to share with everyone."

oldjoedrummond

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« Reply #7 on: Jan 27, 2005, 05:24 pm »
Quote from: "lejenna"
I like the idea of baby-ing casts, and making birthdays extra special, but it's free if you sing the birthday song, and most people really just want things to be acknowledged.  If you're buying cakes for this run, then you set a precedent and it will become an expectation for all other runs.  Also, how many birthdays were there and did you buy cakes or bake them?  (Cake mix goes on sale for $2.00 a box at Safeway....)  You can also establish a new tradition of "It's your birthday, bring your favorite treat to share with everyone."


thank you for your response. I like the idea of bringing your own favorite treat to share.
Joseph H. Drummond

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Birthday cakes
« Reply #8 on: Feb 15, 2005, 12:10 pm »
another idea for large casts: have a bday sign up list (that you would keep so it's hidden from the bday people). The idea: cast members can sign up to bring in bday goodies for various people. It promotes cast bonding and cuts down on the amount of baking you would have to do (granted I'd suggest signing up for at least one yourself). If there are a TON of birthdays - or you work with primarily the same group over the whole season - you can try setting up a secret bday buddy thing as well.

guilkey

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« Reply #9 on: Feb 16, 2005, 09:53 pm »
It isn't your job to buy things for the cast unless you are close to them.
Plug it in and see if it blows.

linka

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« Reply #10 on: Feb 22, 2005, 09:34 pm »
wow. You all are so good. Seriously. I'm a Scrooge and I just tell the cast and crew that I'm not the socal director so things like birthdays is up to them. I plead that they at least inform me if they're going to do a "surprise" at rehearsal.  What has really gotten to me at the opera is that they often break out into song during tech, cutting into the orchestra time, which is then left after me to rush everyone through so we don't go into OT. I'm a pain like that with the holidays too... I used to work the "christmas" show and there was always a problem with the whole secret "santa" exchange, that I just stopped and told the cast it was up to them and not my job or the deputy's responsibility.

Then of course, when it's my birthday, I feel really guilty when they break into song and give me a cake and I was such a weenie.

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