Author Topic: MUSICALS: musicals  (Read 7115 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

sarahdk

  • New to Town
  • **
  • Posts: 12
    • View Profile
MUSICALS: musicals
« on: Aug 26, 2005, 01:24 am »
I'm stage managing my first musical soon... initial auditions are in a couple weeks... any tips for SM'ing musicals?
« Last Edit: Jun 08, 2009, 10:36 pm by PSMKay »

ERK

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 60
    • View Profile
    • http://
musicals
« Reply #1 on: Aug 26, 2005, 01:38 am »
I usually keep the score in with my book, even if I don't anticipate having to call from it.  I take notes during music rehearsals of who's singing which part in case the music director doesn't remember/write it down.  Also any changes in lyrics, cuts, anything like that.  I know a lot of (student) SMs who don't feel it's necessary to be at music rehearsals and therefore do not pay attention (ok, so even some of the pros I've worked with don't) but I've saved some butts a few times keeping track of everything.

Also, give yourself plenty of marginal space to write cues.  Musicals tend to be very cue-heavy in comparison to straight plays.  Keep some Riccola or other throat losenges around for the actors and plenty of fresh water, especially during dance rehearsals.  Make sure you talk about breaks with your director (assuming this is not Equity) and keep some chairs with nice back support around for music rehearsals.  Keep an extension cord for a radio and some new batteries and cassette tapes close by for actors who want to record their parts but forget to bring back-ups.

If you have a separate music director, choreographer, and director, meet with each of them separately to discuss their expectations during their rehearsal time.  Every director/choreographer wants their time managed in different ways, so find out their preferences for warm-ups, how they want to you notify them when they only have 5 minutes left, etc.  Also, discuss dance captains with the choreographer  - do they expect to choose one from the cast or will someone else (a dance student, say) be the captain?  Make sure you get copies of the choreography, but don't sweat taking it down in blocking form too much.  Of course, you need to know who goes where when and who's partnered with whom, but if you get choreography notes, you won't need to notate "2 plies, step, ball, change," and the like.  

I advise having 2 ASMs with musicals- there's so much for you to pay attention to and so many times you'll need gophers, especially if you have dance rehearsals, music rehearsals, and blocking rehearsals going on at the same time.

Which musical are you doing?  Good luck!

sarahdk

  • New to Town
  • **
  • Posts: 12
    • View Profile
musicals
« Reply #2 on: Aug 26, 2005, 03:09 am »
We're doing "Oliver" which I am really looking forward to since I enjoy working with kids... and my ASM is one I have workjed with in the past and she is amazing and experieinced and knows whats up and we work well together so I am thankful for her support.[/i]

loebtmc

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 1561
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA, SAG, AFTRA, SMA
  • Current Gig: Caroling, caroling now we go — and looking for my next gig!
  • Experience: Professional
musicals
« Reply #3 on: Aug 26, 2005, 12:02 pm »
AAhhh - for Oliver!, make sure you have one spare adult body who is your kid wrangler. And this is really really important - that person is NEITHER you nor your ASM but a PA, or a consistent parent. The kids will have long, long periods when they have nothing to do and I promise you, you will appreciate someone whose only job is to be with, manage and keep track of all the kids. Make sure there is a place bearby but far enough from the stage that they can play games and eat and enjoy themselves between scenes and the sound won't carry and interfere w the show.

ORTaurean

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 57
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
musicals
« Reply #4 on: Aug 26, 2005, 01:18 pm »
I will also be SMing a musical for the first time soon.  I, however, will have no children; an adult cast of 15 performing Fiorello.  There will not be an orchestra, but a small (probably 3 piece band).  I have yet to know of there is a choreographer, much less a music director (I hope the band is self-sufficient).  I am also working with a company that has never staged a musical before so it's going to be a wild ride.

How easy is it to break up music rehearsal and staging?  Is it easier to have some in one room singing and the rest blocking/working on the stage?  Coordinating two rehearsals with an ASM?  Or would it be wise (if time permits) to have specific nights to work on the songs (early on) and certain nights for blocking, etc.?
Acting is standing up naked and turning around very slowly.
-Rosiland Russell

DeeCap

  • Permanent Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 319
    • View Profile
musicals
« Reply #5 on: Aug 26, 2005, 01:46 pm »
The more organized you are, the better you will be. Musicals have more "stuff" going on (dancing, music, book etc)

Whats been done in the past is that the first day or two the whole cast learns the group numbers and as the days go by, split the rehearsals into two or three rooms (music, book staging, and dance). The PSM should stay with the director throughout the day, and the ASM goes to music or dance (if necessary. If more stuff is going on w/the staging, have the ASM there)

Each night, at the end of rehearsal, sit down with the director, the musical director and cheo and go over what they want to do the next day. It's good to have a French scene breakdown so people don't get booked in two spaces at the same time.

It gets easier each time you do a musical, I also find calling the show to be a lot more fun.

Good luck

ToddEskin

  • New to Town
  • **
  • Posts: 5
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
    • Todd M. Eskin Homepage
  • Affiliations: AEA, CAEA, AGVA, SMA, SDC
  • Experience: Professional
musicals
« Reply #6 on: Aug 26, 2005, 05:12 pm »
I highly recommend keeping a detailed rehearsal report as well.  Not only do you need to know what is going on the next day, but you will need to be able look back on your past rehearsals to find out what you worked on and when.
Todd M. Eskin
Production Stage Manager
SDC * AEA * CAEA * AGVA * SMA
www.ToddEskin.com

Mac Calder

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 965
  • Gender: Male
  • Plan for the future, live for the now
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: Live Performance Australia / Media Arts and Entertainment Alliance
  • Current Gig: Technical Director
  • Experience: Former SM
musicals
« Reply #7 on: Aug 26, 2005, 08:18 pm »
Quote from: "ORTaurean"
I will also be SMing a musical for the first time soon.  I, however, will have no children; an adult cast of 15 performing Fiorello.  There will not be an orchestra, but a small (probably 3 piece band).  I have yet to know of there is a choreographer, much less a music director (I hope the band is self-sufficient).  I am also working with a company that has never staged a musical before so it's going to be a wild ride.


BAAAD IDEA, not having a musical director. Very bad. It does not matter if the MD is a PART of the 'band', just make sure someone is dubbed MD. Idealy, you NEED to be able to cue someone in the orchestra who can easily signal the start of their playing for certain songs (ie overtures, curtain ups from interval, any songs that require scenic changes first). You also need to be able to cue the end of vamps (those small sections of songs that are repeated endlessly whilst a certain event is happening - ie scene changes, or actions on stage). Most often, this is a simple Red Light, Green Light cueing.

Bands need a standbye if they have wind instruments, and you can always tell a standby by looking at the conductor - in fact it is fairly useful to know how conductors indicate things if you have one - standby is usually their arms raised 'half mast' - often both hands, depending on baton usage. The down beat is your friend. Conductors weave a pattern with one (maybe two) hands depending on the number of beats in a bar. There is one consistancy between each pattern - the final beat is always at the top of the cycle, and the first beat of the next bar, is when his/her hand reaches the bottom. Very generic overview of conducting patterns. Standbys should be given about 10 seconds before the go.

Quote
How easy is it to break up music rehearsal and staging?  Is it easier to have some in one room singing and the rest blocking/working on the stage?  Coordinating two rehearsals with an ASM?  Or would it be wise (if time permits) to have specific nights to work on the songs (early on) and certain nights for blocking, etc.?


Here is how I usually break it up.

MD will do 'vocal' workshops with each principal, and the cast. That is after the second 'reading'. Then, about a week later, we bring in the director and we run propper rehearsals. First we start organic - so everyone sings. As the director gets a feel, they usually want to nut it out. This is where I usually begin taking blocking notation. As we nut out the scene someone - usually the director - will read out each line as each action is performed. Then you put it back with music and singing. Vocal workshops continue through the production.

Another thing about musicals - vocal warmups. Someone (not the SM usually) takes a vocal warm up before shows, and there is often a choregraphic warm up too - to loosen the bodies. Make sure you allow in your calls for them to spend 5 minutes on each. I have seen directors take an hour on warmups alone. (Not SMing at the time). MAKE SURE YOU TALK TO THE DIRECTOR. I cannot stress that enough. Establish the fact that you are allowing them 10 minutes warm up time in total. Tell them that they will only have 10 minutes in the space during performance time to warm up.

Also: Just a tip if you are working with muso's, STRESS to the muso's how important it is to warm up their instruments SILENTLY! it is possible - and it makes the show so much more professional than when you have trumpets blowing, flutes trilling and drums banging whilst the house is open. Same with vocal warmups if they are still going on backstage. Also stress their calls, so that you can have them in the pit, and the pit raised (if that is how you are doing it) before you open the house. I have had to hold the show for 15 minutes whilst an oboe player was late due to a missed bus because she decided that she would rather arrive 25 minutes late (ie 5 minutes before beginners) than 15 minutes early. As an SM, you often have VERY little contact with the muso's, as they usually fall under the TD's wing.

hbelden

  • Permanent Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 412
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA
  • Experience: Professional
musicians
« Reply #8 on: Aug 27, 2005, 12:07 pm »
mc has a lot of experience that I don't, (I've only done three musicals, none of which with more than 6 pieces in the orchestra; also done several small operas with a nine-piece orchestra) so I just wanted to raise some questions because it sounds like I've had some mis-understandings about the SM role with the orch.

Maybe it was just the MD's that I've worked with, but they all expected to be treated as equal with Dir and SM - and the orchestra always was their complete power domain.  I was told that I didn't set calls; that my presence was not desired at orchestra rehearsals; that they (the orch) didn't need contact sheets, nor did they need their names/numbers on the contact sheet.  I was told that it was the orchestra member's responsibility to be ready for the downbeat of the overture, and that the union rules kept me from calling them before that.  What I had to do was find out what the MD needed in terms of rehearsal time and space for the orchestra, and work that into the overall schedule; and as you said, coordinate cue sequence and vamp outs.

Also, is tuning in the pit while the house is open considered unprofessional?  I seem to recall hearing the orchestra tune as standard in most musicals I've seen (but I've not been to much Broadway - definitely fewer than 6 shows).
--
Heath Belden

"I'm not good, I'm not nice, I'm just right." - Sondheim
--

Mac Calder

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 965
  • Gender: Male
  • Plan for the future, live for the now
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: Live Performance Australia / Media Arts and Entertainment Alliance
  • Current Gig: Technical Director
  • Experience: Former SM
Re: musicians
« Reply #9 on: Aug 27, 2005, 06:59 pm »
Quote from: "hbelden"
mc has a lot of experience that I don't, (I've only done three musicals, none of which with more than 6 pieces in the orchestra; also done several small operas with a nine-piece orchestra) so I just wanted to raise some questions because it sounds like I've had some mis-understandings about the SM role with the orch.

Maybe it was just the MD's that I've worked with, but they all expected to be treated as equal with Dir and SM - and the orchestra always was their complete power domain.  I was told that I didn't set calls; that my presence was not desired at orchestra rehearsals; that they (the orch) didn't need contact sheets, nor did they need their names/numbers on the contact sheet.  I was told that it was the orchestra member's responsibility to be ready for the downbeat of the overture, and that the union rules kept me from calling them before that.  What I had to do was find out what the MD needed in terms of rehearsal time and space for the orchestra, and work that into the overall schedule; and as you said, coordinate cue sequence and vamp outs.


Yes, the MD has control over the Orchestra just as the Director has control over the Cast - however the calls for cast are agreed upon WITH the SM and Director, in fact all decisions for anything not artistic and directly relating to the directors process is in the end, the SM's domain (at least that is my experiance).

 Whilst I (as SM) do not decide which things are worked on in which rehearsal and what times they start (although often, the director will say to me "I want to work on this, this, this and this, make sure everyone who is needed comes" and I create the call list, which gives me control over times), once it becomes Production Week, the director is phased out a bit. So now, I have control over what is worked on, when and how. That means that _I_ set calls. After all, I have to be happy that the cast and crew are all in place ready for curtain up. Not the director. The same goes for the muso's. Whilst the MD has set calls previously, once production week starts, they work by MY schedule. I don't know the ins and outs of union rules, esp. in the US, but they have always been happy to come in at about the half hour call when I asked. Union rules cannot stop voluntary action.

As for the MD you worked with, he sounds far too power hungry. Sure you are not required at orchestral rehearsals, although I always like to attend the first to get managerial things sorted. A contact list is down right ESSENTIAL, at least for yourself. They don't need to be on the crew's contact list, in fact I recomend that they are not, however it is essential that you have the ability to contact EVERYONE involved in the production. I mean, you keep the numbers of your back stage hands on a contact sheet, they are far less vital in many aspects to the orchestra.


Quote
Also, is tuning in the pit while the house is open considered unprofessional?  I seem to recall hearing the orchestra tune as standard in most musicals I've seen (but I've not been to much Broadway - definitely fewer than 6 shows).


Tuning is fine. Tuning can be done in seconds. One starts with the lowest instrument, playing a concert pitch note, and you work up the orchestra by pitch. That process is done before house opens. Usually an orchestra will sustain a single concert pitch note (usually b flat) for a few seconds before the overture so that they can auraly check that they are still in tune. That is professional. It is when you see orchestras where they sit in the pit blowing out mary had a little lamb on the tuba, ode to joy on the clarinet and when the saints go marching in on the glockenspiel as the audience walks in that you loose respect rapidly.

Being in an orchestra myself (never done a musical though), standard operating procedure. Warm up back stage, enter stage, sit on stage, keep blowing warm air through instrument, aural tune, play opening. Tuning does change with the space that you are in, as does warming up the instrument with warm air, hence the aural tune before you start.

loebtmc

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 1561
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA, SAG, AFTRA, SMA
  • Current Gig: Caroling, caroling now we go — and looking for my next gig!
  • Experience: Professional
musicals
« Reply #10 on: Aug 28, 2005, 12:04 pm »
mc - Sounds like you do things very differently - I have done a ton of musicals, both as a performer and as a SM, and am also a classical musician so I have worked from all three POVs, from orchestras to bands to piano/drum/bass combos.

You gotta have a MD - someone who not just is in charge of the musicians but also, tempo, dynamics etc - and generally the marriage of the actors with the instrumental sound. While the director is indeed the conceptual center in terms of vision for the overall piece, the MD is indeed his/her creative equal, same as choreo or any member of the design team, and in terms of the big choices on the same plane as the director. I patch the rehearsals for music, dance and acting work w the actors, and the MD rehearses the orchestra/band without any input or scheduling or concern from me until we get to tech. Attend orchestra rehearsals? I don't even know when they are. As long as I know it is getting done, which is the MD's responsiblity, I don't care until tech.

THEN we work together to make sure the musicians have time in the space, time w the performers, a sitzprobe and so forth.

As to inclusion on the contact sheet, I only tracked the orchestra/band members when they were our consistent musicians. The MD gives me their pertinents for emergencies but only the main and first-tier subs ended up on the final contact sheet (the one compiled for closing night of all folks associated w the actual running of the show), certainly when I was on the road and we had a pickup orchestra city by city. Had we been carrying the orchestra, as some shows do, I would have had all their info, but in my experience the MD (or suitable designate) chased down missing musicians. They operate from a different world, and an SM calling them would have been considered a breech of protocol. Of course, this may be different on big shows that travel with full complement, esp as we all get to know each other far too well.....

And I gotta disagree - one of my favorite sounds as a kid was watching and listening to the orchestra tune in pieces, and then together to A-440 as a collective before the downbeat (which, I might add, is the correct name for what you are calling the conductor's "standby."  That sound was magic to me, and I loved it. Certainly, there are some instruments that can be tuned farther ahead than others, but how far in advance they can tune depends not just on the instrument, and whether it is string or wind or brass, but also on the house humidity and temp range from night to night.  This includes the piano.

Mac Calder

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 965
  • Gender: Male
  • Plan for the future, live for the now
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: Live Performance Australia / Media Arts and Entertainment Alliance
  • Current Gig: Technical Director
  • Experience: Former SM
musicals
« Reply #11 on: Aug 28, 2005, 11:41 pm »
Quote from: "loebtmc"
You gotta have a MD - someone who not just is in charge of the musicians but also, tempo, dynamics etc - and generally the marriage of the actors with the instrumental sound.


Some directors like to do this. Esp. if you have a small band (ie a rock band, done a few with a 4 piece band), it is not un common for them to be on stage and therefore almost actors, and hence totally integrated with the rehearsal process. These are really fun shows to work on IMO, having the muso's in there from the start.

Quote
While the director is indeed the conceptual center in terms of vision for the overall piece, the MD is indeed his/her creative equal, same as choreo or any member of the design team, and in terms of the big choices on the same plane as the director. I patch the rehearsals for music, dance and acting work w the actors, and the MD rehearses the orchestra/band without any input or scheduling or concern from me until we get to tech. Attend orchestra rehearsals? I don't even know when they are. As long as I know it is getting done, which is the MD's responsiblity, I don't care until tech.


True, the MD often has a higher level of control over calls, I like to be able to keep abrest of what is happening, and since it is usually up to me to book the space and make any special arrangements, open the space, and often am required (contractually) to be there throughout the rehearsal, a lot of the times, the MD works under the same conditions the director does - ie all calls organised with me in advanced. Especially the after hours ones at uni, where there is a ton of paperwork that needs to be filled out to prevent them being kicked out by security.

Quote

THEN we work together to make sure the musicians have time in the space, time w the performers, a sitzprobe and so forth.


True, this is where the most organisation is required (and demanded)

Quote
As to inclusion on the contact sheet, I only tracked the orchestra/band members when they were our consistent musicians. The MD gives me their pertinents for emergencies but only the main and first-tier subs ended up on the final contact sheet (the one compiled for closing night of all folks associated w the actual running of the show), certainly when I was on the road and we had a pickup orchestra city by city. Had we been carrying the orchestra, as some shows do, I would have had all their info, but in my experience the MD (or suitable designate) chased down missing musicians. They operate from a different world, and an SM calling them would have been considered a breech of protocol. Of course, this may be different on big shows that travel with full complement, esp as we all get to know each other far too well.....


The shows I work with have always had a static orchestra, which means that I gather their contact details from the start. As for the MD chasing down missing muso's, in rehearsals, that is fine, but show time, seeing as I am the only one with a phone, and the one with the signin sheets, I see who is missing, and I call.

Quote
And I gotta disagree - one of my favorite sounds as a kid was watching and listening to the orchestra tune in pieces, and then together to A-440 as a collective before the downbeat (which, I might add, is the correct name for what you are calling the conductor's "standby." )


no, the 'stand by' is the raising of the hands to 'half mast', then both hands are raised to the top of the 'cycle', giving the upbeat which defines tempo etc etc etc, then comes the downbeat. At least they are the aussie terms.

I have rarely tuned to concert A, although I suppose it all depends on how you were 'raised', or how your MD was raised.

Quote
That sound was magic to me, and I loved it. Certainly, there are some instruments that can be tuned farther ahead than others, but how far in advance they can tune depends not just on the instrument, and whether it is string or wind or brass, but also on the house humidity and temp range from night to night.  This includes the piano.


I usually have not had the pleasure of having a propper piano. Usually I have keys (small pits, so no room), which means we end up tuning to the keys (lack of ability to properly tune). This means that most of the tuning can be done before the house opens inside the pit, although temperature does change slightly as the house enters and the lights warm. I do not mind sectional and complete orchestral tuning - it is, I agree a pleasent sound - that is the aural tuning. It is however the 'mucking about' on the instrument, playing first grade songs which, speaking from a strictly professional point of view, I find the offensive. Especially if working on a serious show. The only show I did not mind the muso's playing was when we had the curtain out as the house was open, and we had the actors wander out and 'bump in' the set before open - we even did a refocus of a few lights with the cougar. It worked wonderfully - especially since we refocused those same specials during interval.

hbelden

  • Permanent Resident
  • *****
  • Posts: 412
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA
  • Experience: Professional
musicals
« Reply #12 on: Aug 29, 2005, 11:53 am »
Thanks for the clarifications, mc.  The point of static orchestra vs. sub orchestra is well taken.  I don't think I've done a single performance where the first choice for each instrument was playing together at the same time.  On these small-budget things, where the MD has cobbled together an orchestra three deep at each position, and we never have the same line-up twice, it would have been damn-near impossible for me to track.  Especially since the MD would make day-of changes, or the musicians would swap dates and "forget" to tell the MD!

And I agree, mc, farting around in the pit with totally inappropriate melodies while the house is open (i.e., dixieland jazz before a performance of "Les Miz") is something I would bring up with the MD as needing to change.  I usually don't pay attention to anything in the house before the five-minute call, however.

I'd like one clarification, though, from our USA members - sign-in sheet for the orchestra?  Yes or no?  Or Depends?

Thanks everyone.
--
Heath Belden

"I'm not good, I'm not nice, I'm just right." - Sondheim
--

loebtmc

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 1561
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA, SAG, AFTRA, SMA
  • Current Gig: Caroling, caroling now we go — and looking for my next gig!
  • Experience: Professional
musicals
« Reply #13 on: Aug 29, 2005, 12:21 pm »
mc - I see what you are calling standby now and yes, the downbeat is the first note w the prep for it what you are calling standby, tho no musicians I know in the US call it as such - but that is neither here nor there. Even having sung w conductorless ensembles and small quartets, and having friends w small conductorless string trios and the like, someone - someone specific - designates the start and the tempo.  The director and MD can decide on tempo (w input from the performer) but the performer rarely starts a piece of music, and even those w perfect pitch need a note - at least a bell tone to get the key. Most of the time the music starts before the singer. And then there are cut-offs. etc. So (back to the original qq) there needs to be an MD or, if not, at least a first chair who takes on the responsiblity in the band, someone who is acting as the MD designate, even in small rock bands or combos  (in my experience usually, tho not always, the keyboard).

If indeed you are arranging the rehearsal space for the musicians, I can understand why you would need to be a part of that - again, I don't normally deal w negotiating space for them until we get to tech, tho you being at a university might be the difference.  My experience here is that the producer arranges that, just as they arrange our rehearsal space and theater rental dates. My combos/bands/ whatever have used a studio or the MDs home or the theater or the rehearsal space when we are not in it, in which case the MD needs our schedule to work around, but I don't need to know the specifics other than it is happening (tho the MD will let me know where he/she is working if their reh overlaps ours in any way).

Once we are in the theater, the MD always has access to the SM phone as needed, and in this day and age has a cell as well, so unless I am asked, I leave chasing down missing musicians to them. I have run shows with (as Heath mentioned) 3 and 4 deep sections so while we all got to know our regulars pretty well, it was up to the MD to make sure we had a full complement night to night and to chase down the missing parts if necessary.

As to "farting around in the pit" - (love that) - well, the pros just don't. Perhaps tuning involves a little playing of music, because it keeps you warm on, say, a string instrument - and hearing a chord or a run of notes confirms either its correctness or where any tuning might have been missed. I gotta add - I have worked w some TERRIBLE orchestras while on tour, players not deserving the term musician (and brother, once you deal with pick-up orchestras and the vast range of what you might end up with on a nightly basis, you really appreciate touring with the band), but none of them have treated house-open unprofessionally. Sounds like you have had some really bad experiences w community-level intrumentalists. But I would always rely on the MD (or the MD-designate) to relay instructions to those folks rather than telling them myself because of the protocol issues, and what it would mean to the backstage morale and general run of the show.

Mac Calder

  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 965
  • Gender: Male
  • Plan for the future, live for the now
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: Live Performance Australia / Media Arts and Entertainment Alliance
  • Current Gig: Technical Director
  • Experience: Former SM
musicals
« Reply #14 on: Aug 29, 2005, 08:25 pm »
Threatening them with filling the pit with cement seems to work wonders. And yes, I have worked with some absolutely ATROCIOUS community and
supposedly 'professional' orchestras. I have also worked with some great ones. All I can say is that they have always sounded supurb during the show.

Etiquette (stage/pit based) is often lacking in non-professional productions, and even in a lot of professional - I mean, I always dress nicely even if I am back stage - I make sure I am neat during shows, and I am not visible. The number of muso's I have seen comming in with holes in their shirts, and daggy jeans is shocking. I am a big one for bands/orchestras in uniform of some sort, even if chances are they will not be seen (at least black and whites).

That's neither here nor there. Maybe if I do some MD'ing of a show I will be able to comment.

I guess a lot of these issues are largely due to the fact that any professional gigs I do, are usually non union, who recruit average joe blogs' from the streets with no real experiance in a theatre - the number of back stage hands I have had to train to pull hemp ropes on the counterweights is ridiculous. At least most venues I have worked in have venue techs with riggers certificates so that I can actually do some work during bump-in, instead of spending my life up the fly tower with untrained flymen.

As for the lead chair I think I mentioned that miles above (this post, length wise has gotten quite long), however only in passing. I agree, with any band there needs to be some form of leadership.

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
10 Replies
7240 Views
Last post Oct 17, 2006, 12:32 am
by Emsny
10 Replies
2523 Views
Last post Feb 25, 2014, 05:16 pm
by MatthewShiner
1 Replies
1376 Views
Last post Apr 25, 2016, 02:40 pm
by VSM