Author Topic: SAFETY: Speaking of evacuations  (Read 250 times)

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forner

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SAFETY: Speaking of evacuations
« on: Sep 08, 2017, 01:48 pm »
Hello Everybody

I'm curious how you would handle emergencies during the show. How do you and your cast handle them? Do you discuss your plan during Tech Week, perhaps at First Tech? If so did your cast/crew follow your instructions?  What kind of announcement do you make for a technical, fire, medical or weather related emergencies such as earthquake, tornado? Do you always checked your own evacuation route from your booth, or perch ?

Edited to add topic tag- Maribeth
« Last Edit: Oct 02, 2017, 07:57 pm by Maribeth »

Maggie K

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Re: Speaking of evacuations
« Reply #1 on: Sep 08, 2017, 05:00 pm »
It tends to vary from theatre to theatre.  Although I definitely like knowing the routes out and having a designated meeting place outside the theatre so that we can count heads.  Interestingly enough, the NEAT agreement now requires holding a fire drill.
I like the ephemeral thing about theatre, every performance is like a ghost - it's there and then it's gone. -Maggie Smith

Maribeth

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Re: Speaking of evacuations
« Reply #2 on: Sep 09, 2017, 12:46 pm »
Helpful to make sure everyone knows their responsibilities ahead of time- I would say it's good to talk it through by first preview. Checking to make sure that walkie-talkies are charged, routes are clear, etc is a great way to fill down time during tech.

As Maggie mentioned, it varies- some theatres already have a plan in place and you just need to review it with the team. House management is a part of any performance evacuation so it's not always the SM making the announcement. (In some theatres, the sound system cuts out if the fire alarm is going off, so you might not be able to make a VOG announcement.)

If there are weapons in use at the time, especially firearms, it's important to have a plan for how those are secured when evacuating. It's also helpful to have a list of all actors and crew handy, so that you're not trying to remember how many folks you're looking for.

We had a fire alarm go off toward the end of Act 1 of a show I did a few years ago, and one of the most memorable things about it was one of the ASMs walking onstage, taking an actress by the shoulders, and walking her off to evacuate- she hadn't registered what was happening. 

bex

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Re: Speaking of evacuations
« Reply #3 on: Sep 09, 2017, 02:44 pm »
We had a fire alarm go off toward the end of Act 1 of a show I did a few years ago, and one of the most memorable things about it was one of the ASMs walking onstage, taking an actress by the shoulders, and walking her off to evacuate- she hadn't registered what was happening.

I also remember that quite clearly...
You will have to sing for your supper & your mortgage, your dental coverage & your children's shoes, over & over again while people in desk jobs roll their eyes the minute you start to complain. So it's a good thing you like to sing.

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