Author Topic: PROFESSIONALISM: Backstage Etiquette (public displays of affection)  (Read 8326 times)

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MileHighSM

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I'm just curious to get opinions on this-doesn't everyone agree that public displays of affection backstage are inappropriate?  I'm working in a relatively large regional theatre, and we have an ASM and a band member making out and being overly cutesy backstage and in the green room.  The SM doesn't see it as she's always up in the booth, but it's really kind of gross.  Should I say something or let it go?
« Last Edit: Jun 09, 2009, 12:15 am by PSMKay »

birdie4113

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #1 on: Feb 28, 2007, 05:55 pm »
I would agree with you that I think it is inappropriate.  I, however, would not reprimand them unless it was interfering with the production.  I would just simply ask them to take it somewhere else.
Bridget

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #2 on: Feb 28, 2007, 08:02 pm »
PDA's are rude in 99% of cases. No one wants to see someones tongue down another persons throat. A chaste kiss before the person walks out onto the stage or a hug, or lying down on a couch together, thats fine. Any form of fluid exchange or over-the-top cutesy displays, keep them for at home.

Just try to make whatever you say light and humorous - ie "Tonsil Hockey is not a spectator sport, so get a room guys!". If they keep behaving inappropriately, talk to the SM. Tell her that it makes you uncomfortable and that whilst you have been putting up with it, you are getting to the end of your tether.

MatthewShiner

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #3 on: Feb 28, 2007, 08:49 pm »
Um, it's not illegal and it's not affecting their job.

WHY BOTHER?

What is your position?  Are you managing this person?  Why is it gross?  If it really, really makes you uncomfortable, talk to the SM, and have them deal it.

As a SM, I might say something casually about it to someone, if someone backstage felt VERY uncomfortable about - but as long as they are doing thier job, and they are both consenting adults, then leave it alone. 
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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

nmno

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #4 on: Mar 01, 2007, 03:38 am »
Um, it's not illegal and it's not affecting their job.

I admit that I'm taking this to an extreme and I'm sure I'm opening a can of worms here but - if it crosses in to the world of sexual harassment/hostile work environment it does become a legal issue.  Not that this is necessarily the case in GradSM's case, but...

Does it seem to be bothering others as well? Has anyone complained to you about it? Is this a longstanding situation (vs. being new and therefore likely to fizzle out)? If the answer is no, I might mention it to the SM anyway, in case s/he's gotten complaints you aren't aware of but I don't think I would push it...  But without being there and seeing the extent of the PDA, don't know.
Also, how long do you have to deal with this situation?  Often, there are a lot of things I decide aren't worth the hassel of stirring up and I can suck-up and deal with for a regional theatre 3-4 week run...

Scott

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #5 on: Mar 01, 2007, 09:37 am »

I agree with Matthew.

Clearly not a case of sexual harassment/hostle work enviroment as described.

If the people involved are doing their job, move along.

Find something else to worry about.


BalletPSM

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #6 on: Mar 01, 2007, 12:04 pm »
Last season I dealt with a similar problem at the company I work worth -- only it was affecting other people becuase there were always children around, and parents would call to complain.  Yes, the two people were consenting adults and no, it wasn't affecting their jobs -- but it WAS significantly affecting other people.

I think that if there are minors in the cast, you are not out of line to say something to the SM or the company manager (if there is one).  What is your position with this company/show?  Don't try to handle it yourself as it probably won't do any good -- you need to get higher management involved unless you have been appointed to deal with these kinds of company-related issues. 

If the entire cast is over 18 and the PDAs aren't affecting the work, then there's really nothing you can do, short of live with it.  Might be a good idea to keep informal documentation of what and where these situations are taking place, in case a legal situation ever DID come up (but make sure that you are keeping this documentation with a witness of another SM).  It may not hold much clout anyway...but it might help

Stage managing is getting to do everything your mom told you not to do - read in the dark, sit too close to the TV, and play with the light switches!

Tiggz603

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #7 on: Mar 12, 2007, 07:50 pm »
I need everyone back stage to respect my ASM, as s/he is my right hand, and I need people to respond when my right hand speaks. If my ASM is acting immaturely (and to a certain extent PDA is immature) then I need to know about it, and it needs to stop. Of course, I am dealing with people in community theatre who routinely disrespect the SM and ASM and even the Director, so they will use any advantage they can.

Didaskalos

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #8 on: Mar 13, 2007, 06:29 pm »
That kind of behavior always bothers someone.  It's self-centered and rude to say the very least.  The theatre is a work-place, not a place for people to force their lack of self-control on every one else.  Why should it be allowed to continue until it begins to affect the show and the morale of company members?  By then it's too late.

I set the standards of behavior high in my productions, but the expectations are laid out at the very first company meeting.  PDA is forbidden on the premises, period.  I think it's irresponsible for a manager to subject decent people to indecent behavior and expect them to ignore it. 

It's often easier to do nothing than to do what's right, but don't confuse them into the same thing.
Do it right the first time;  do it right every time.

Scott

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #9 on: Mar 14, 2007, 07:29 am »
PDA is forbidden on the premises, period.  I think it's irresponsible for a manager to subject decent people to indecent behavior and expect them to ignore it. 

It's often easier to do nothing than to do what's right, but don't confuse them into the same thing.

You're the arbiter of decency and rightousness?  Do you work in a theater facility or for some sort of church?

ljh007

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #10 on: Mar 14, 2007, 08:49 am »
I think you need to pick your battles.
If everyone is doing their job, then there is no problem here.

LiLz

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #11 on: Mar 19, 2007, 11:35 pm »
Personally, ewwwww!  But I have to ask, does she make her scene changes without being reminded?  Does she get her work done without being coached?  As long as you don't have to babysit her or beg her to get her hands off her boy toy when they should be moving the set, who cares?  I would never conduct myself that way in a professional situation - I'd wait until after the show and head out to the dumpster like you're supposed to do.  However, you can't always force your own sense of professionalism on someone else and if it isn't screwing up the show, don't stress it.

bdmovies

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #12 on: Mar 23, 2007, 08:18 pm »
I'm new and don't know who the youngest is around here, but I'm in my last high school production as a student, and am in a relationship with an actress. Because of the fact it is a private high school and she is younger, there is so much to think about as in what we can and can't do. I think PDA is unprofessional during a show or rehearsal regardless of the situation, but that's just me, seriously, I'm sure people can find a better time.
Bobby D.

Didaskalos

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #13 on: Mar 24, 2007, 08:45 pm »
You're the arbiter of decency and rightousness?  Do you work in a theater facility or for some sort of church?
[/quote]

Aren't we all?   I work in a large public high school.  The original poster asked for opinions--I offered mine.  I don't ask you to agree with it or abide by it--unless you want to work in my theatre program.
Do it right the first time;  do it right every time.

sammy

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Re: Backstage Etiquette
« Reply #14 on: Mar 31, 2007, 03:57 am »
People in love are often alone in a room of fifty. I have found that walking by, smiling and saying "you two are so cute" won't offend them, and more importantly, reminds them that others can see it. From there, in my experience, they cool down a bit and it becomes a running joke, of sorts. At least, then, you will be more comfortable talking about it with them if someone becomes uncomfortable. My two cents!

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