Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - nick_tochelli

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 30
Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Where to Start...?
« on: Dec 22, 2015, 02:11 pm »
I would personally say if you can master the trick of exiting college and lose no momentum please let the community know because that's essentially a miracle. You're leaving your collegiate small pond and going into the "real world" ocean. There will be stumbling blocks and you will get moving slowly but surely. If you want this to be your career, it will be. You just have to work hard at it.

Out there things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.

And then things start to happen,
don't worry. Don't stew.
Just go right along.
You'll start happening too.
-Dr. Seuss-

My stand by was always, "Nothing today, thank you!"

I don't ever view the thank you as causing a rift or creating subservience. I view it as Thank you for your hard work. Might I ask how this situation came up or is it just an observation you made? Did someone see it and make a comment to you, Ruth?

Employment / Re: Employed LORT Design positions by Gender
« on: Jun 11, 2015, 12:23 pm »
I looked up the Iowa report to see if they broke up by contracts but since it didn't I left it out. I would actually love to see if it's possible to include types of contracts vs. gender the next survey.

I will say I was more thrilled at the Tony Awards by the two female lighting designers who won more than I was the clean sweep of the women in the book and score categories. Both are hard to achieve but I feel like women designers have a much harder hill to climb. That is strictly opinion and is not fact based per se.

Employment / Employed LORT Design positions by Gender
« on: Jun 11, 2015, 11:08 am »
Fascinating look into the genders of those employed in LORT Theatres in design positions. I believe most of us had an inkling the swings in gender would be like this, but what I was floored by is how uneven it actually is.

Has anyone else noticed a different trend where they work? Are there more women lighting, scenic, and sound designers where you are? How about guys designing costumes? I personally would have been interested in the SM split, but I get the point the author was aiming for.

The Green Room / Do you ever forget how?
« on: May 04, 2015, 05:29 pm »
My last production was in November of 2011 and it was one of the more challenging shows for me to navigate. Not only in terms of the tech values, but there were also cast issues, venue issues, Secret Service "issues" (that gets quotes because the Secret Service do as they please and I'd never dream of getting in their way either), and a lot more. I knew this was going to be my last show in potentially a very very long time/ever, and I was proud of how I conducted my business and handled the production. It came off excellently and if I can pat myself on the back I thought I called a wonderful show.

Now some 3.5 years later after barely stepping foot into a theater in that time, with the exception to sell theaters things, I got a phone call from a good friend and a company I still have ties to. They happened their way into a production calendar at a space in NYC when another show canceled. So they are remounting a successful one night engagement they did in March. However because of the last minute nature there are conflicts galore with the cast and also the stage manager. PSM had an unavoidable conflict on Saturday night and it was during  the tail end of tech. So the call comes at 3pm to see if I can make it in that night to finish up tech. Hour and a half later I'm on a train back into the city.

Get to the theater, and after some quick reminiscing with friends and introductions to new cast members I hop behind the tech table, quickly learn the PSM's script marking style and begin to do my best to imitate it so she can easily follow when she returns, and my mind just dropped right back into it. I have the long forgotten lingo back in my mouth, I have my timing and cadence....

We tech through the final 10 pages of the script. Run that twice. Take 30 and come back for a full run. So I only see the final 10 pages of the script and now I am calling a show cold without having seen the play and I don't even know the story. What I do know, however, is the director and designers really well. If I was working with them it would be approximately the 7th or 8th show we would have worked on together in some capacity.

Having not called a show in 3.5 years I was actually pretty pleased with how I did and the only true cluster much I got into was when I got lost in the script (between skipped lines, paraphrases, added lines and the stage directions and dialogue positions being reversed....don't get me started on that one!) the show went off without too much of a hitch. Oddly enough the worst call I made was during the 10 pages I had teched myself because....why not?

So hey....guess stage managing is a little like riding a bike. You just have to get back on and get going and it will all come back to you. Just a little story I figured I'd share. Never close the door because you might get pulled out of "retirement" someday and get to relive the magic.

My career tuckered out around 10 years but had much more to do with an Impending Rupture of the Belly (favorite way to say wife was pregnant) than wanting to quit stage managing. I didn't have much of a choice for all the reasons you're used to hearing from someone out of the race.

As for jobs after...who knows...everyone has a certain and unique skill set that could allow them to be a sales associate, real estate agent, CPA, carpenter, plumber, business owner and everything in between. I happened to have retail experience so I chose sales tangentially associated to theater. I could just as easily started a business. You have to find what interests you to truly know the answer to this question.

I echo VSM on the kindness. Especially if this was an issue the company knew about before hand. It's really down to them and while it's unfortunate, it's the way is.

I worked in a theater company with a HUGE financial sponsor who would be cast in musicals despite being a horrible singer and dancer. He also couldn't memorize his lines for spit. We all went in knowing this. We all supported him instead of flipping their lid on him (it does help he didn't exactly go bonkers on other actors unlike your actor apparently....). Another actor I worked with couldn't work with rewrites and alterations so the concept of changes during previews was foreign and made working with him very difficult since so many of his lines were cue lines for tech elements. God love this man, he couldn't remember the difference between whirlpools and windmills. 'Tis not often one sees a windmill tattooed on the face of an individual...

The cast should have been made aware of this from the beginning. If they weren't that may be the lesson to take from this for the future. Make sure everyone knows this is the case from the get go. It could lead to some extra good will for the actor having issues, and everyone can prepare from the get go to just go with the ride and try to get back to where they need to go via improvisation.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Bad ASM's
« on: Mar 11, 2015, 01:48 pm »
My college theater department had an unofficial motto: Fail here because you won't be afforded the opportunity to fail in the real world. I benefited greatly from this. I only did so in hindsight of course. At the time I was a very angry young man.

I'd personally only take the 2x4 away if there was a nail sticking out of it. Smacking people with a 2x4 with a nail just isn't cool.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Bad ASM's
« on: Mar 11, 2015, 01:24 pm »
That is what I was trying to get across with the Unprofessional and non-professional. Thank you for summing that up far more clearly, KMC.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Bad ASM's
« on: Mar 11, 2015, 07:30 am »
It's hard to figure out what the issue is by such a vague post. Unprofessional can cover a lot of different things from not putting out reports to sexual harassment and everything in between. Can you provide some details?

Not for nothing (and still workout knowing the situation) but the show being in a college setting automatically lends itself to being unprofessional. I don't mean that as a dig. Everyone involved will be at a different experience level and mistakes will be made. After all its kids learning how to do this for real. Instead of going around the PSM why don't you figure out how to mentor them. Teach them something. Give them advice. I would have loved that opportunity in college. If you're truly stuck as to how to proceed speak to the college staff about your concerns.

I'd say the joke that you're missing is the long series of instructions you're giving them. It's a lot of info.

SMAshlee is right about short and sweet. Tell them to get there as soon as possible and keep you posted. Check in with you or an ASM as soon as they arrive so you know they're in the building. If you want to tell your ASMs the remainder of that message (get in mic and go for sound check) then that might work. There's no need to stress out an already late/stressed out actor by telling them what they'll have to do the instant they arrive in the theater.

The Green Room / Re: Odd legal stuff you've learned
« on: Feb 27, 2015, 04:00 pm »
Cables come with all their special lingo which designate what qualities the cable has. There was a law passed (or ordinance I guess since it's NYC specific) that says you can't have a Junior Service cable in the space. So any cable that has a designation with a J is illegal because it would only be rated to 300V instead of 600V like theatrical cables should be. It was something we hadn't been aware of. We automatically sell the higher quality cable on purpose here so it was hardly ever an issue until that one theater who was money concerned and we gave the JOW cable a try. Most everything you buy won't be rated this way. Just every once and a while a DIYer will buy the cheapest cable (Junior Service) and try to use it.

The Green Room / Re: Odd legal stuff you've learned
« on: Feb 27, 2015, 03:33 pm »
I actually learned one two weeks ago about the specifications of a cable that can and cannot be used in NYC theaters. We tried to sell someone a specific cable and he actually send us the regulation saying we were trying to sell him an illegal extension. Who would have guessed?

I'm of the mind that most people don't associate coworkers as a unit. Now if you've worked with this person repeatedly then the question may arise about styles. If this was a one off gig and you just happened to work with someone the company dislikes, that probably won't reflect on you.

If they ask, take the high road. If you're pressed don't "make news". Start with the "yes we did" answer and if they keep going move on to the different philosophies and styles. Mention how you like to work and use that as an opportunity to sell yourself vs. trashing this SM. That's the best way to remove this SM from the conversation is to sell yourself on your qualities, without even bringing up the SMs short comings. 

Even if it comes up in passing like " I see you worked with John Smith. How'd that go for you?" A simple "there were some challenges, but we were able to work through them together"is as tactful a way to get the point across and they'll supply the subtext all on their own.

Tools of the Trade / Re: TOOLS: GaffGun
« on: Feb 26, 2015, 01:17 pm »
The rumors are now true. If you guys are interested in the Gaff Gun, shoot me a message and we can talk about it. I'll probably quickly transition out of the PMs here and email you but you can PM me if you want more information. I nearly jumped for joy when we finally closed this deal up!

I'm not one to believe factory demo videos, but the demo video is legit. It is really that simple to lay down the cables as demonstrated.

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 30