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Messages - Liz_C

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Thank you for all of your help!  In the next several weeks I will be finalizing my thesis project (eep!).  It's been fun to read your answers.  If anyone has missed the survey link up to this point and would like to contribute, it'll be up until about mid/late February.

Thanks again,

Attending school at: Eastern Michigan University
Instructor: Christine Tanner
Training level: Graduate
Project due date: March 1, 2011

Hi all!  As a part of my MFA thesis project, I am creating a guide for stage managing for youth theatre. 

My hope is to lessen the stress of the sometimes-intimidating journey of stage managing a room full of youth (casts of thousands!), communicating with parents in addition to the production team, and successfully getting a production from auditions to closing night.

So, here's the fun part:
I am collecting wisdom, ideas, suggestions, and experience in a survey.  It's ten questions long, and it is geared towards everyone who has worked in any capacity on a show with any number of young actors.  "Young actors" for this purpose are those ages 18 and younger.  I would love any and all responses you would be willing to provide.  Stories are welcome, if not encouraged!

Thanks in advance!

Here's the link:

The Green Room / Re: Convolution Creep
« on: Oct 27, 2010, 05:29 pm »
I used to work in a theatre where the only 2 entrances to the booth were through the house and through a 3' square hole in the wall that led backstage.  The hole was just high enough to be impossible to climb into comfortably without a chair or acting block underneath it as a step.  Unfortunately, the hole emptied the booth occupants out into a lane through which actors used as a path to and from the stage.  Of course, they would trip over anything I put there to assist in the climb up.  I finally settled on an acting block painted yellow and glow taped, but it would still get put back "in its proper place" in the rehearsal room by other well-meaning users of the space.  This was especially not fun when I occasionally had to leave the booth mid-show to assist with situations backstage and someone had "helped" by moving the block out of the way.

Your face burns because
Clorox wipes are NOT to be
used for make-up wipes.

I agree that someone from stage management should be in the room, but what I do largely depends on what age group of actors I'm working with.  With elementary students, I'll usually join in the exercises and participate with them.  With middle or high school students, I'll feel it out at each rehearsal and sometimes join in and sometimes step back and let whoever is leading the exercises be the only adult in charge of those exercises.  At movement and vocal rehearsals with students, I will definitely be in the room, helping the actors maintain focus and making sure breaks happen and we stay on schedule.

With adults or rehearsals where discipline and focus aren't an issue, I'll sit in the back and catch up on emails and paperwork.  I'll still keep an eye out for things that I could do (getting fans for an increasingly hot room, getting ice packs for injuries, making copies, cleaning up spills, etc).  Much of it involves figuring out much the person leading the rehearsal (director, music director, choreographer,etc) wants or needs me to be involved, and in what way.

Regardless of age group, I make sure everyone is there who should be before I do my own thing, and I'll do a general check to see if there's anything else the rehearsal needs before we get started.  Also, when I'm stage managing students, I will step out of participating if at any time they need reminders to focus or if there are any discipline problems.

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