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Messages - Risa Comical

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Oddly enough, I can't read music, so I don't use the score at all. I memorize the music before we are even half way through rehearsals, and just know when to call the cue, which is still noted in the script. However, since we always use recorded music, I also write down the time in the song a cue will come in, and my sound board operator gives me a heads up for particularly difficult cues.

Since everyone seems to be in agreement I wonder what the student SMs would do if the cast basically says screw you, we're doing it anyway. Just to add another wrinkle to this issue. Maybe even after the show starts, they just hijack it and do their own thing.

Don't mean to change the terms of the question, but I'm curious how people would react.

I would stop the show. Immediately. Once I learned the cast planned on doing this, I would inform the director, along with the backstage team that there is the possibility we will be stopping the show if they go through with it.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Rehearsals: Be quiet!
« on: May 09, 2013, 02:33 am »
I would just like to add, that no matter what route you go (keeping calm, exploding, whatever) nip it in the bud ASAP. In my last show I was ASM, then promoted to SM right before our first tech rehearsal, and was uncomfortable with my sudden authority, which meant once I finally started shushing people, it was totally ineffective. I actually ended up losing my cool and telling an actor to shut up, and ended up getting called out on it from said actor during rehearsal notes that evening. It was embarrassing. Which lowered my credibility even more with the cast. So I ended up saying "shhhh" in between almost every cue during the 3 week run.

The Green Room / Re: Best one-liner from a performance report
« on: Sep 06, 2010, 10:22 pm »
I've heard many hilarious director notes, but one that has always stuck out to me simply said...

(Actor)-> don't

Seemed funny at the time, and will now always be a joke to said actor.

Ok, so I know this is like 6 years old, but I have a story to tell.  My first time SMing, we didn't get the scores timm about a month before the show, even though we had been in rehersal for months already. Luckily there was no inbetween dialouge, so when recording choreography I just matched the movements to the lyrics of the songs. I got to write my cues in a few days before opening night, and on closeing night of a three day 4 show run, while everyone was taking apart the set, I was erasing cues from my promt book.

So at least with musicals, it's possible to take blocking with no script/score at all. Although it would have been very difficult to call the show if I didn't have it.

Maybe it's because I don't know terms, but I'm wondering if what I do is a form of paper tech...

I'm currently the ASM for a production, and the SM never gives me anything to do, and so now that we're out of the blocking phase, I've just been sitting there. So one day I went through the script and wrote all the light,sound,fly and any other cues down in order, and asked the director abot any other cues he wanted added or taken away from the script. I'm emailing the sound cue's to our sound guy ( he's the designer, and sound board operator I think.)

Is this at all like a paper tech, or was I just doing my job?

This topic has been split off from a 2005 thread on Paper Techs:,572.0.html -Rebbe

Employment / is this normal?
« on: Jul 15, 2010, 08:51 am »
Back in april I accepted an SM job for september from my hs teacher when he does a play at a community theatre. I'm currently living in another state.

He hasn't contacted me at all, luckily a friend of mine was cast in the show and passed on any info he had. Apparently 'september' means 'this sunday' because that's when rehersals start (which I found out last night)

I had been sending him messages in various format for the past week with no response. I finally got one at 5 am, when he replied to am email I sent saying I had been replaced at the theatres demand.

I was upset to say the least. But do I have a reason to be? Even if it's non equity community theatre, should the director inform you that you will be/ have been replaced?

I know crying didn't help. But I guess it was all I had left after I apparently (thanks for feedback) took what neccesary steps I could and nothing worked. I'm also emotional by nature, and all I could think of is what would happen with the police, my director/teacher, my school, and the expensive fine...

Ok, so I have a question about decision making.

For a tech my first hs show, the crew and I (the SM)  arrived for our call to find the theatre completely locked. Because I was a 17 year old student I didn't have a key, and our technical director was already suppposed to be there and have the place unlocked. So we waited for about 45 minutes, and nothing, and just out of habit we tried one of the doors. To everyone's surprise, it opened. For about 3 seconds we stared in awe until the alarm started going off! I dashed inside, since I was the only one who knew where the alarm was, and tried to turn it off after seeing a sign pointing out there would be a $500 fine if the police showed up to a false alarm. I pressed all the buttons, nothing worked. Called my technical director and head director multiple times (along with his wife!) No response. The police station was down the street, and I was terrified of a cop pulling up to the theatre seeing a bunch of hs kids dressed in black (doesn't look good!) And I would be taking the blame for it all (which my ASM though was crazy, cause she was the one who oopened the door) I finally found the phone number for the alarm company (and in tears with a terrible headache by this time) called them. They asked for the password, which I didn't know, and they told me they couldn't disregard the alarm till the password was recived. I had a crew member drive to the directors house (he lived in the area) and of course he wasn't there. Eventually my director got there, I gave him the number for the company, and he turned off the alarm useing the password, which was horribly obvious, and everything was ok.

Later I saw a cop car across the street, my ASM assured me it was unrrlated, but I wasn't so sure...

Anyways, I now know I want the key, and the alarm password.

But my question is, aside from the crying, did I handle this correctly? Was there somthing else I could have done? Has this ever happened to anyone else? How did/would you handle it?

For a high school competition last year, our troupe did a horror play called Dark North. Even though we took almost all the cursing, alcohol, and sex out of the show, one of the main parts of the plot is really violent. Everyone loved it! Except for the judges, who felt it was to advanced for highschool students, and made up notes (such as they felt the play was about a milk jug, because we moved it 3 times in a 45 minute segment, and that it wasn't scary to one judge, because she grew up in a funeral home) just to drop down our score so we couldn't compete at the state level. Apparently if you don't do happy peppy shows in highschool, you're not doing it right...oh well.

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