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Topics - Scaenicus

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As my final project for high school drama class, my stage managing partner and I are attempting to write a SMing handbook.  This will cover the entire process, from distributing scripts to strike.  This is quite a daunting task, and while we have the basics covered, we are looking for suggestions.

What do you wish someone had told you when you started out?  Have you learned any habits, strategies, or tricks that make a certain task easier?  What should you always carry on you (keep in mind, this is high school, so no knives)?  Has someone told you a phrase/anecdote that has stuck with you?

Thanks very much!

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / SCENERY: Onstage Hangings
« on: Nov 20, 2007, 10:32 pm »
In a high school production of The Beggar's Opera, I will have to figure out how to safely hang one of our actors by a noose.  The idea proposed in the book is that an actor puts a noose around his neck and drops through a trapdoor, only to be safely caught by a net or mattress, and a dummy is promptly hanged instead.  Another switch is made in this manner when the actor comes back to life.

However, our trapdoor may or may not allow for this sort of stunt.  Someone had the idea of hooking up the actor to a rock climbing harness and attaching the rope to that with a loose one around the neck for the audience's benefit.  When the rope is yanked up, it looks as if the actor is being hanged, but he is actually supported by the harness instead of his neck.

Any other suggestions?

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Controlling an Unruly Cast
« on: Nov 15, 2007, 07:30 pm »
I am a high school sophomore stage manager, and I often find it difficult to control large casts of students.  Our shows have casts anywhere from 15-50 people; the upcoming musicals have 35 apiece, and it is hard to control a large bunch of rowdy kids who are, for the most part, older than me.  Does anybody have suggestions for asserting my authority, when I am younger than most of my cast?  Also, any techniques for quieting down the cast besides yelling?

Thank you in advance.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / SHOWS: SMing a Shakespeare
« on: Jun 12, 2007, 07:40 pm »
I will be SMing a high school production of Romeo & Juliet this fall, and I wonder if anyone has advice!  There are a few threads mentioning Shakespeares, so forgive me if this is redundant; however, more specifically, I want to be as prepared as possible when rehearsals begin in August.

So:  What should I be doing in the upcoming two months to prepare for R&J?  Should my kit have anything special in it?  Any tales about your Shakespeare or R&J experiences?  Words of wisdom?


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