Author Topic: SCHEDULING: Making a rehearsal schedule for a musical  (Read 5920 times)

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SMeustace

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I'm suppose to make a first draft for a schedule for the upcoming musical this year. I'm going to divide the show into french scenes. I want to try something different for this show; and help actors know what it will be like in the future for professional theater. We only have about a three month period (from auditions to strike) with only a one week run. As of right now we have a blackbox and a music room for rehearsals. We may be able to use a dance studio for rehearsals.

What does a typical professional (musical) production schedule look like? With all the choreography, staging and vocal rehearsals going on. Do they stage it first then move to choreo?  Or do they have scheduled days for choreo. or vocals alongside staging?
« Last Edit: Sep 29, 2012, 01:31 pm by Rebbe »
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EFMcMullen

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Re: Schedule
« Reply #1 on: Sep 29, 2012, 10:08 am »
First of all "only a three month time period"... be grateful for that much time. 

Part of this question seems like a conversation with your director, musical director, and choreographer.  How do they want to work?  In my experience the learning of the music comes first followed by staging and choreography (but not necessarily in that order for the staging and choreography). Some teams I've worked with want to get the big group numbers knocked out of the way and then focus on staging and smaller numbers.  Some want to do a mix.  Some of this also depends on number of rehearsal spaces you have available.  Can your principals be learning music while your ensemble is learning the dance break? Etc.  Does your director want to be in the same room with the choreographer the whole time.  Do you have more than one accompanist so that you can be running multiple rooms at the same time?

I work two-week summer stock in the summer.  We generally have 2 to 3 rooms running all at the same time-a dance room, a staging room, and a music room.  We have 2 to 3 accompanists available.  It is a scheduling puzzle to get everything staged in 5.5 days, but this is a very different scenario than your 3 month span. 

PM me if you want an example of our rehearsal schedules for a week.

Good luck!

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babens

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Re: SCHEDULING: Making a rehearsal schedule for a musical
« Reply #2 on: Sep 29, 2012, 08:05 pm »
There really is no typical schedule in the professional world.  It's going to vary based on so many factors, from the way the design team works, to the limitations of the rehearsal space, to the type of contract the show is operating under (assuming you are dealing with Equity).  That being said, you will almost always find that music is taught before anything else, as there is little use attempting to stage or choreograph a number if the actors don't know it.

After that it's totally out the window based on how your creative team works.  I have been in situations where all numbers are choreographed first and then the blocking is done after that.  I've worked with directors who focus only on one act at a time and then put the two together during the final portion of the rehearsal period.  And there are times when you will be bouncing all over the place based on things such as conflicts, studio availability, etc.

I would definitely get input from your creative team.  The director, choreographer, and musical director are all going to have different ideas about who they need when and for how long.

omaira17

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Re: SCHEDULING: Making a rehearsal schedule for a musical
« Reply #3 on: Nov 02, 2012, 11:55 am »
I don't really think there is a standard other than to say that it just makes sense to have Vocal rehearsals first. But I'd be happy to tell you how we do things.
Read through of script and cast meeting 1st rehearsal.
Vocal Director gets the next 1 or 2 weeks of rehearsals to teach the music (check with them to see how they want to schedule it). We do a few company rehearsals and some with just certain people called.
Next is Choreography- Choreographer gets a few weeks for teaching and running through numbers. We add in a few vocal/choreography rehearsals together so they can sing and dance they way it's supposed to go and the Vocal Director & Choreographer can see how everything fits and make any necessary changes.
Lastly we do Blocking- a few rehearsals of learning blocking. We add in some rehearsals with the choreography and vocals to make sure it all works together.
Then we do runthroughs, runthroughs, runthroughs, and a Designer Run for all of the designers to come in and see the show (without lights, costumes, etc.). So they can see if there's any concerns.

Good luck!

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