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Messages - sarahbear42

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SMNetwork Archives / Re: SM: the musical
« on: Dec 19, 2008, 01:08 pm »
We've got two Chriastmas parody songs already, sounds like the show within the show needs to be Christmas Carol, or something else "seasonal."

Perhaps something truley awful, like a Christmas Carol meets Nutcracker Christmas extravaganza, with a really whacked-out producer and live penguins.

Employment / Re: Facebook through an Employer's eyes?
« on: Dec 18, 2008, 10:47 am »
Something else to consider: Just because you get smart and make things private now doesn't mean the information isn't still cached out there somewhere. I'm not sure if it works for things like Facebook and MySpace and such, but you can find a whole lot of stuff on the Wayback Machine that isn't actually "online" anymore.

This is one of the reasons that I'm glad I got married straight out of college... I changed my name just in time to not have any professional references that would know me by my maiden name, so any idiocy I perpetrated in high school would take some serious digging to find.

So I'm on the running crew next month at the local LORT theatre, and just got a call yesterday that the costume shop needs me to come in for a fitting, because the crew is going to be in costume. This of course has me ridiculously excited (it's Mrs. Warren's Profession, so I'm assuming I get to dress up Victorian every night, and since I'm a history/Renfest geek when outside the theatre, this makes me very happy!)

It got me thinking though-- while this is the first time I've worked on a show that's actually done the costumed-crew thing, I've had a few shows I SM'd where it was either discussed and dismissed, or discussed as having been a part of a previous production of the show I was working on.

So far, I've run into three viewpoints on costuming the crew-- "Yay that's so cool," usually coming from those who would be costumed; "No" with an eye toward the cost and concern for the extra load on the costume shop; and "No" with the view that it's silly and therefore unprofessional and is just a way for the crew to goof off.

Personally I think it's great when productions do this, not just because this time I get to wear it and that makes me geek out, but also because I hate it when you see the crew onstage at all, I feel like it ruins some of the magic to see guys in black and be reminded that this thing or that thing is a prop, that that wall is really just some plywood on wheels, etc, and so having Victorian maids or whatever move everything feels a lot more in the spirit of theatre.

What's everyone else's thoughts? I tried to find a thread on this and couldn't find anything (though, putting the words "costume" and "crew" in the search box on this forum makes for a lot to sift through!)

Employment / Re: Facebook through an Employer's eyes?
« on: Dec 17, 2008, 08:30 am »
I think it's a great idea. I try to keep my Facebook/Myspace/Twitter all appropriate and tame, but I have some friends with absolutely ridiculous things... you'd think by now people would know that you shouldn't have a beer in hand in your profile picture...

Tools of the Trade / Re: Going Green
« on: Dec 16, 2008, 04:32 pm »
To go green doing this: I printed out one blank paper form with their names, a date area and an area to initial "in" and "out" (or just "in").  I post this on the callboard and cover it with clear transparency paper (if "paper" is the correct term for the clear plastic) and use a transparency pen / marker. Each night, before the show, I wipe off the old attendance and start fresh.  I never have to print a new sign in sheet. I just keep reusing the one I have!

My last company had something similar-- not for the call board/actor sign-ins, but to keep track of everyone in the offices during the day. If you get a cheap dry-erase board, you can do lines and write the names in sharpie, let it dry, then everyone signs in in dry erase. The eraser won't take off the sharpie, but if you use the expo dry erase board cleaner the sharpie will generally come off cleanly with a little elbow grease. Hadn't thought of it for use for the sign in sheet before.

SMNetwork Archives / Re: SM: the musical
« on: Dec 16, 2008, 04:29 pm »
Some sort of dance number done in complete silence, by people in black, doing a super-complicated prop-and-scenery change, is floating round my head.

Yes! As the opening number. Perhaps with each SM at some point putting a piece of paper on a giant callboard flown in at the crescendo... when all the paper's on it, it forms the show's logo.

Perhaps a finger-snapping gang fight, road crew vs. house crew, to add tension?

« on: Dec 16, 2008, 04:26 pm »
It's true. The company I used to work for's artistic director was playwright for about 1/2-1/3 of the shows that they did, with an audience that knew and liked the shows. When I worked in the box office there, there would always be calls before each new production asking whether or not the artistic director had written it.

One woman gave me a five minute lecture about how she was going to discontinue her season tickets if we kept doing things she didn't know she'd like because she didn't know it... like The Importance of Being Earnest. Which she had called convinced was written by our artistic director.

SMNetwork Archives / SM: the musical
« on: Dec 16, 2008, 10:31 am »
Hows this for a plot?  An ASM arrives from a small midwestern repertory theatre and tries to make it big on Broadway.  In spite of some initial set backs, one of the big shot SMs is sidelined and our spunky would-be SM gets his/her chance at the big leagues and knocks it out of the park! 

Darn!  Thats 42nd Street.  ???

Edited by nmno for content.

Oh, come on, all the best shows are just reiterations of other shows.

But could you find enough SM's who would be willing to act? Or would you end up with actors who could say "I SM'd once in college" (ugh ugh ugh nothing more frustrating than an actor who thinks they've stage managed)

SMNetwork Archives / SM: the musical
« on: Dec 15, 2008, 07:28 pm »
Note from Moderator:
This topic is split from "The 12 Days of Christmas thread" found here:,4198.0.html

That was fun and I think we just wrote the big Act 1 finale number for Stage Managers: The Musical  :D

Now there's a fun and/or scary idea... can you imagining being the "real" SM on that show?

Hmmm... visions of 20 tapdancing stagehands... :D

Personally I don't understand why a true stage prop knife was not being used, but it sounds like they dull real knives for use on stage. Why this knife had to be replaced mid-run and no one bothered to properly prepare it before setting it on the props table is beyond me. I don't buy into the conspiracy and murder plots that were circulating around on this story. Honestly, it sounds like a lot of people getting too comfortable with a show.

The tag line on the article says "An actor narrowly escaped death after slashing his throat on stage with a real knife, instead of a blunt stage-prop blade."

I agree though that the murder plot thing is a little far fetched. My personal theory is that someone who didn't know what they were doing lost/broke the knife, and ran to the store to get a new one so s/he wouldn't get in trouble. Does anyone know if there's been any followup articles on this?

and edit: Found the article you were refering to that explains what happened, if anyone else is interested in more info:

Geez, how stupid.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Re: Handling an emergency
« on: Dec 11, 2008, 07:27 pm »
The only thing that I think of is that ASM should have told you that he was having trouble when he asked her to call for his inhaler, that should have set off a warning flag for her right there... and it would've been nice for her to be more specific over headset later, but that's certainly understandable. I think what you did was perfect.

Wow, a sick part of me wants to post that article underneath every sign backstage that says "check your props"...

Employment / Re: Questions for Interviewing SM's
« on: Dec 09, 2008, 10:28 pm »
When I was gearing up for my internship interviews post-college, my SM advisor had me do some practice-run phone interviews to get pointers (and to get rid of my absolute terror of interviewing...)

One of the women I mock-interviewed with did something really interesting that I always remember now-- she intentionally did things to get me angry (cutting me off mid-sentence, being just-on-the-edge-of-rude, asking me questions that didn't make sense.) She told me afterwards when she was giving me her comments that that's something she often does when interviewing over the phone, just because it's so important for SM's to handle annoyance well and it lets you see past the "I'm interviewing" facade.

I'm not sure if that's common practice or not, but I'm sure doing it shows a lot about the interviewee!

The Hardline / Re: Performing arts unions and guilds list
« on: Dec 09, 2008, 01:28 pm »
Suprised nobody's posted IATSE yet.

The things that come to mind first are responsibility/punctuality, organization, good people skills (not necessarily being Mr./Ms. Super Friendly but rather being the kind of person who can get along and work well with everyone) and someone who is comfortable both leading and being led.

Of course, the most important thing at that level I would think would be finding a kid who understands the basic premise of what an SM is, and who wants to try it.

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