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Topics - leastlikely

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I'm currently applying for a staff SM position at a university events venue. In addition to submitting a resume and cover letter I also have to do an online application which requires filling in work history.

I have 8 years of experience as a freelance SM. I have no problem expressing the job duties in a way that will look good to a hiring manager, but there are mandatory questions in the application such as supervisor name, title, and contact info, and non-mandatory questions including hours per work week and number/titles of employees you supervised. I feel like it would be best to just list all my SM experience as one job, rather than including separate entries for the 50 or so productions I've done in that time (nobody wants to slog through that application), but I can't really answer any of those questions because I haven't had just one supervisor or just one team that I've managed.

How do I answer these impossible questions? Can I just say "varies"? Any other advice for wedging a freelance career into a form that is clearly tailored for more traditional jobs?

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The Hardline / Videos of stage managers mid-show
« on: Mar 21, 2018, 03:11 pm »
I've seen a handful of videos floating around on Facebook and Tumblr where a stage manager has filmed themselves (or been filmed by someone else) calling a performance. I've also seen videos of backstage footage such as transitions and quickchanges. I've seen this type of video posted by the SM, or by the producer/company as a PR thing, or I think I've even seen one that appeared to be a clip from a documentary of some sort. I assume in the case of a documentary that everything is cleared by all appropriate unions and everyone involved in the show (since the doc producers will be making money off the footage), but I'm wondering about companies and individuals sharing things like this.
 
There are plenty of specific rules about what photos and videos can be taken of the cast and of the production.  Is it okay for a stage manager to share a video of themselves calling cues, provided the camera is focused on the SM? What if the show is audible on a monitor? Is this a valid form of promo material that can be shared on an individual's or theatre company's social media or websites? Do specific permissions need to be requested from AEA, from actors whose voices are heard, from the sound designer/USA, etc?

How about a video of an intermission shift where the set and crew members are visible? On a non-Equity show I did recently, the company shared a time lapse of the intermission shift on Instagram. Or a quickchange video where an actor is on camera in costume, like the video of Kelli O'Hara's THE KING AND I quickchange from the Tonys a few years ago? I've also seen personal QC videos shared by actors - for instance, a friend of mine who played Fiona in SHREK posted a video of her own ogre transformation.

It seems like these "behind-the-scenes" videos are getting more popular (or at least, I'm seeing more of them lately). So I'm just wondering about the legality of these sorts of things.

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The Green Room / SMA announces new podcast series
« on: Aug 06, 2017, 02:01 am »
The Stage Managers' Association of the United States (SMA) is launching a new web video/podcast series: Standing in the Dark: A Series of Conversations with Prominent Stage Managers (press release below). Nominate an SM to be interviewed:

https://www.stagemanagers.org/sma-nominations/

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Employment / Listing awards on resume
« on: Sep 28, 2016, 12:43 am »
Do you include best musical/best play awards on your resume?

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This is a courtesy posting - I have nothing to do with hiring for this job. If you are interested I will send you an email address to submit your resume. I imagine they probably want local only, but you can hammer that out with them.

Chesapeake Shakespeare Company in Baltimore, MD is seeking a stage manager (AEA or non) for their production of Romeo and Juliet. It's already in rehearsals (being run by the ASM, I think). The SM would join rehearsals as soon as possible. Tech is on Thursday and Friday, March 17 and 18. The show performs at 10am every weekday starting Monday March 21 - weekends are off. I'm honestly not sure about the closing date, because the body of the email I was sent says something different from the attached calendar - I think it's probably May 6, but it might also be May 20? It's a 90 minute play with no intermission. For Equity SMs, I don't know what contract it would be on.

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Employment / Non-Union SM needed ASAP in Northern VA/DC area
« on: Oct 13, 2015, 12:30 pm »
Hi all. I have stepped in as interim SM for Harvey at 1st Stage in Tyson's Corner, VA. Looking for a non-Equity SM to take over rehearsals starting Sunday October 25th or sometime in that week - my last day is Friday the 30th.

  • This position is paid with a weekly stipend
  • No housing available - SM must be local or provide their own housing
  • Metro accessible (silver line)
  • Tech begins Fri Nov 6
  • First preview Thurs Nov 12
  • 5 shows a week Fri-Sun
  • Closing is Dec 20

Please PM me for more details and how to apply!

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This may not have a lot of relevance for many of you, but I'm sure I'm not the only one who still uses QLab 2 for some things...

Quote
From: Sam Kusnetz
Date: October 7, 2015 at 11:30:07 AM EDT
To: QLab List
Subject: [QLab] Warning: QLab 2 not compatible with Mac OS 10.11 "El Capitan"

Hello folks

I regret to inform you all that QLab 2 has been found to be incompatible
with Mac OS 10.11, or "El Capitan" as Apple seems to want us to call it.

We do not have any plans to update QLab 2, so please DO NOT upgrade the
OS on computers that are running QLab 2.

Testing so far shows that QLab 3 appears to be compatible with 10.11,
although we have not tested definitively and we're not prepared to shout
it from the mountaintops.

Yours,
Sam and all the folks at Figure 53
--
Sam Kusnetz | Figure 53 Field Operative

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The bottom line of this question: Is it possible to pay for performance rights for a song that's not covered by ASCAP/BMI?

I'm doing a TYA show right now about Mayan indigenous folklore. We've found a song by a Yucatec artist that we really want to use. Our actors would be performing it onstage, we're not using a recording.

As far as I can tell, the only official recording of this song is in a Yucatec documentary about indigenous music. I don't believe there's a 'studio version.' The artist has two albums on iTunes but neither one has this song. We found it by looking for Mayan songs on youtube, and found a clip from the documentary. The documentary doesn't seem to be on sale on Amazon, so I don't know how to get that either!

We'd like to be able to give the composer a little money for our use of his song. We are trying very hard to be supportive of indigenous artists. Even though we know he will never know about our use of it unless we tell him, we want to pay him because it's important to our mission with this play.

But, because his song doesn't seem to be covered by an American performance rights organization... is it even possible?

I'm thinking the only way to do it might be to track down the guy personally... which looks like it might be difficult. Which basically means either we use the song for free, or we find another song that's easier to pay for.

But we really love this song and have already translated it (so we sing one verse in Yucatec, one in Spanish, one in English) and arranged it... and the show techs in one week. So we would be very sad to change it.

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Job Postings / DC - SM needed at No Rules
« on: Aug 20, 2014, 12:50 pm »
I'm the rehearsal PSM for "Seven Guitars" at No Rules Theatre Company, in residence at Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA. I need to hand it off to someone else to call the run, due to a pre-existing commitment. (If you're familiar with NRTC, it's important to note that I'm pretty sure there will be NO Winston-Salem run for this production. There is talk of maybe entering the show in some sort of festival in Winston-Salem maybe, but it will not have a full 3-week run down there.)

Looking for AEA or non AEA.

Important dates:

  • Aug 24 - design run
  • Aug 27 - design run
  • Aug 31 - paper tech
  • Sep 2 - tech starts
  • Sep 10 - first preview
  • Sep 13 - opening night
  • Sep 28 - closing

Please PM me if you're interested and available!

Update: got it covered, thank you!

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The Hardline / Meetings as rehearsal hours?
« on: Aug 08, 2014, 01:49 pm »
I'm about to start rehearsals on a show where 4/7 of the cast are non-Equity, and 3 are performing on... well, I don't actually know what contract it is, I haven't seen that sort of paperwork yet. I joined 6 days before first rehearsal... it's been hectic. But the bottom line is, the AEA actors are allowed 30 hours a week. So we have 6 five-hour days scheduled each week.

First rehearsal is this coming Tuesday. But the director wants to meet with each actor for an hour on Monday, and on Sunday apparently the MD wants to meet with the entire cast for 60-90 minutes and introduce them to the musical world of the play and maybe jam out a bit, but not really work music from the show.

Am I correct in my understanding that, since these meetings are required, we will have to cut 2.5 hours of rehearsal later in the week for the AEA actors? I get the impression that the director feels that it's not ~Rehearsal Time~ per se, therefore it isn't ruled by the contracted hours... but I feel like, if we are telling the actors that they must be on site for these meetings, then that counts toward their 30hrs?

Also, these meetings are on Sunday and Monday before a 6 day work week, which means (if this actually counts as working hours) actors will be working for 8 days before a day off...

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Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / MORALE: tech relief
« on: Aug 29, 2013, 03:48 pm »
Mod: I wasn't sure whether to put this under "morale" or "tech" since it's kind of both. If it seems better to list it as tech, sorry for the trouble!

Anyway, I was just wondering if you have any routines or habits that you use to keep yourself healthy, safe, and sane throughout tech.

Do you tend to indulge in junk food during tech since it's the only time you let yourself do that, or do you eat healthier than normal? If you need caffeine, what's your preference? What snacks do you like to eat to keep yourself going on looooong days? What do you like to do to support your crew, designers, and cast when energy and morale are waning?

Post Merge: Aug 29, 2013, 03:50 pm
My answers:

About a year and a half ago, I was ASM on a show with an LD who, upon learning that the SM planned to sit in the green room for her dinner break on our first ten out of twelve, established a rule that the entire SM team must leave the building during the break. I have adopted this as my own personal rule, and I will do everything in my power to make sure myself and the rest of the SM team get some sunshine and fresh air, even if it's only half an hour.

I tend to eat at least as healthy as usual, if not more. I like to eat a good breakfast with protein in it (NO DONUTS ahhhh I'd be asleep in 2 hours!). I like to bring fruit (bananas especially!), veggies and dip or hummus, nuts (depending on allergies in the room of course), crackers and cheese... Stuff that's simple to nosh on but also doesn't sit heavy in the stomach and doesn't make me feel like crap. I like coffee in the morning and Diet Coke with dinner and lots of water throughout the day, but by the end of tech week I'll probably have graduated to sugar-free Red Bull (and when I'm really exhausted, I drink a frosty-cold Red Bull in the shower!)

As far as company support goes, I like to bring enough snacks to share with anyone who needs them. I keep a blanket in my car in case anyone needs to nap during the break. And I give all my designers/directors a thank you card at opening (cast and crew get cards at closing).

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Self-Promotion / The Lady Becomes Him at Faction of Fools
« on: Apr 16, 2013, 02:12 pm »
Faction of Fools, Washington DC's Commedia dell'Arte company, is just about to open a new work called The Lady Becomes Him, devised from the Casamarciano scenario "Donna Zanni."

Apr 18 May 12, 2013
Thu, Fri, Sat @ 8pm // Sun @ 2pm

This Wednesday, April 17, is an invited dress rehearsal (want to come? shoot me a PM!) and Thursday is a PWYC preview. Opening reception is Friday the 19th.

We are in the Eastman Studio Theatre, in the Elstad Annex at Gallaudet University, 800 Florida Ave NE. Free parking. 7 blocks from Metro (red line - NoMa-Gallaudet (NY Ave) station).

General tickets are $25. Military, seniors, and students are $15. Gallaudet students are $10. For opening weekend only, use the code NEWWORLDBOX for $12 tickets.

Order your tickets here.

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Self-Promotion / Taming of the Shrew in DC and on the radio!
« on: Jan 29, 2013, 01:56 am »
Lean and Hungry Theater is a Washington DC-based company that does one-hour radio drama adaptations of Shakespeare, and presents them on WAMU 88-5fm, DC's local NPR affiliate.

Our Taming of the Shrew has been plucked out of Padua, Italy, and dropped in San Antonio de Padua, Mexico. This production puts a Latin flair on Shrew by setting it in the world of the Mexican radionovela (radio soap opera) called La Fierecilla Domada.

We'd love to have you in the audience for our live broadcast, but if you can't make it, we'll be streaming live online at wamu.org. Show time is 6pm on Sunday Feb 3. Yes, it interferes with the Super Bowl. Yes, a local team is playing in the Super Bowl. I know. But if you don't mind missing the first little bit of the game, please come see us! Or at least tune in on the radio/online :)

Tickets to the live broadcast performance (which features six actors playing all the roles* and doing live foley!) are available here for $20. The performance is hosted by the Women's National Democratic Club, at their historic Whittemore House at 1526 New Hampshire Ave NW (Dupont).

See our website or RSVP to our facebook event!

*Okay, the six actors are only playing MOST of the roles. We did have to cut a few. The whole production is an hour long, give me a break :P

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Stage Management: Other / Radio plays
« on: Dec 27, 2012, 11:55 am »
Does anybody have any experience in managing a radio play (or podcast, or something along those lines)? I'm entering completely new territory and am wondering if anybody has any words of wisdom.

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Self-Promotion / A Commedia Christmas Carol
« on: Nov 21, 2012, 10:37 am »
A Commedia Christmas Carol at Faction of Fools in Washington DC
Based on the book by Charles Dickens, but written and directed by Matthew R. Wilson

Located in the Elstad Auditorium at Gallaudet University (800 Florida Ave NE)

Nov 29 - Dec 23
Thurs - Sat at 8pm, Sun at 2pm

Thursday the 29th is a PWYC preview, Opening Night reception is on Friday the 30th.
Industry Night on Monday Dec 17 at 7pm
NO SHOW on Sun Dec 9

$25 general admission
$15 for students, military, seniors, and groups
$10 for children 12 and under (Not recommended for children under age 9)

ASL Interpreted Performances: Thurs Nov 29, Fri Dec 14, Sun Dec 16
On all other dates, Open Captions available upon request

See this link for more information and to purchase tickets.

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