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Messages - giabow

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The Green Room / Re: SM Hobbies
« on: Oct 24, 2011, 11:41 pm »
I've recently started playing roller derby.  Great exercise, seriously good fun - plus (provided you abide by the rules!) it's a good way to release any pent-up aggression...

Hooray for derby!

I've been playing derby for about six months and am totally in love.  It's my new favorite thing.

Aside from that, I knit. 

The Green Room / Re: Do you add a personal touch to your booth?
« on: Sep 23, 2011, 11:41 pm »
I've recently returned to a theatre I haven't worked at in five years (though five years ago, I worked there very regularly.)  I was pleased to discover that the booth still has a few of my personal touches: the first three verses of Yertle the Turtle written on the ceiling (it's a very low ceiling; the SMs have a tendency to write and draw on it,) and a poster of Johnny Depp on the back of the door (from an actor who used to give me pictures of Johnny Depp as opening night gifts.)
It was kind of like coming home again.

I don't get it.  Why would it even occur to a board op that not confirming a standby is an okay thing to do? When I say stand by (or warning or whatever) my board op is to confirm.  Period, end of story.  Its part of the job.  In any other job, if your supervisor tells you to do something, you do it or you're fired.

Or am I just too hard?

I agree with the others; I don't mind my board ops doing other things as long as the show doesn't suffer.  Right now, my light board op is 14 and a freshman in high school (intern.)  She does homework during the show, but is always ready for the next cue.

I've done other things during the show as a board op.  I ran light board for the French Play in college.  The first act was an hour and a half with two light cues (beginning and end.)  I don't speak French.  I got a lot of studying done during that show.

I'm friends with a lot of the people in the cast of the show I'm currently doing.  I've worked with many of them before.  So far, we've been able to keep theatre life and real life seperate.  They all know that anything I say to them as a SM has nothing to do with our friendship.

Although, right now I'm dealing with something that could easily ruin a friendship I have with one of the actors.  We have had three incidents with him so far (all due to his drinking, one involving physical assault of a board member.)  He was fired last night (with three shows left of the run.)  I'm trying to stay out of it as a friend, and also deal with it as a stage manager.  Its hard.

Bah.  Humbug.

Christmas Carol again for me.  The guy who started the theatre wrote this version.  There are bits of it that are SO different from the Dickens that it just drives me crazy.  Future speaking for one.  Lydia (Dickens' Belle) returning to Scrooge at the end.  
Every year, I say "This is my LAST Christmas Carol."  And yet somehow, I always find myself doing it again.

Oh, and also in rehearsal for The Mandrake, which doesn't open till mid-January.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Your book Left or right?
« on: Oct 27, 2005, 07:06 am »
I do text on the right because I'm right handed.  I find that I have to write blocking faster than I have to write in cues.  Its neater if I put the blocking on the right since thats where my hand is anyway. (Its also the way I was taught to do it, though I've tried it both ways.)

Since I've been doing it this way for so long, I don't find it confusing to look to the left for my cues.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Great ASM
« on: Oct 18, 2005, 08:14 pm »
The qualities I like best in an ASM is someone who will take initiative.  If they see me moving some chairs and they don't hop up to help, I wonder if they're right for the job.  The best ASM I ever had would try to beat me backstage after The Miracle Worker shows to wash the dishes before I had a chance to do it (she was a little strange.)

To encourage good work from my ASMs, I try to tell them often that they're doing a good job.  In my opinion, ASM is the worst job to have.  You feel like you're the SMs gofer and noone gives you credit for the hard work you do.  Every once in a while, I'll bring in a little treat (candy or something) to let them know I appreciate them.  For my 21+ ASMs, I'll buy them a drink opening and closing nights.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Doodles
« on: Oct 18, 2005, 08:08 pm »
I doodle in my "notes" book all the time.  I find I can focus better if I give the right side of my brain something to do while the left side of my brain is concentrating on something else.

Sounds like a load of bull, I know, but it works.  A design prof I had in college used to encourage us to doodle during his lecture.  He said we paid better attention if we gave our "right brains" something to do.

Erin,  where would one find one of those Lumipads?

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Prop dilemma
« on: Oct 08, 2005, 06:17 pm »
From experience, I can say that making small chickens out of styrofoam and paint isn't too difficult (especially if your audience is at least five feet away from the stage.

I made six cornish game hens out of styrofoam for The Nerd this past summer.  They were on plates with real food, and with stood the washing of the plates pretty well (they were glued onto the plates.)  They require a little bit of maintenance (regluing wings and legs back on,) but weren't too bad.

I haven't tried anything larger, but imagine it can't be too different.

I have lots of random bits of things left over from shows.  The ones that raise the most eyebrows are:

6 styrofoam cornish hens (I made them last summer for The Nerd.)

a pigeon made out of sports socks and paint with a wooden beak (for Sherlock's Last Case)  

   I also have a stuffed fish pillow (rainbow trout) that my grandmother gave to my father.  Dad sent it to me a number of years ago to use for The Complete History of America (abridged).  I've used that darn thing in about six shows.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Paint technique
« on: Oct 02, 2005, 09:02 am »
This may be needlessly complicated for you, but its what I found ....[/url]

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Call backs
« on: Sep 21, 2005, 09:24 pm »
I find myself at auditions more often than I'd like.  I usually just make sure everyone has the correct sides, and keep track of who has read, who hasn't read and who needs to read with whom.  And I organize the paperwork - make sure the headshots are in order, etc.

I only suggest a friend if a director says "Hey, I need people to come to this audition, do you have any ideas?"

And I only make suggestions/comments if asked.  The comments I make are rarely ability-based.  If I have worked with someone before and they were unprofessional, I'll warn a director; "You may want to think twice about casting so-and-so: they're often late for rehearsal and rarely prepared."  Sometimes, if the person is talented enough, the director doesn't care.  But not often.

SMNetwork Archives / kit
« on: Sep 17, 2005, 11:33 am »
I'll add to the list:

a box of crayons (for bored child actors, or any actor for that matter)

pixie stix (a director I work with is diabetic.  He usually takes good care of himself, but I keep some pixie stix on hand just in case.  They're better than glucose tablet because they dissolve in your mouth - no chewing or swallowing involved.  Good in case he passes out.)

mini golf pencils (you get get a box of them for about $2 at Staples.  They're handy for two reasons 1) when actors forget their pencils and use mine, they tend not to give them back.  I don't care if these ones disappear.  2) most people hate to use them because they're so small.  If they have to use them once, they tend to remember their own pencil from then on.

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