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Messages - Rhynn

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I had a theatre romance develop during set construction.  By the time we were in techs, I had reassigned the crew jobs so that one was working in the booth and another was backstage.  The backstage person was not on headset, either.

Usually I provide scripts for my spots and have them call their own cues.  We write the cues in at Paper Tech, and firm them up during Tech Week.  When we rent a comm system, it never extends to Spots, and they're too far away for the SM to cue anyway.

Sometimes they just don't listen.  I remember one show the cell phones were interfering with the wireless mics so badly I had to go into the house and PLEAD with the parents and guests to turn them to OFF--not just to silent or even airplane mode!  It was the hardest moment of theatre in my life.

Since I am director, PSM, and all the designers, I haven't done a traditional rehearsal report in years--just a DO list. 

This show I'm coordinating with 4 musical different musical directors and a producer, which means I still do all the work I did without them--they just do the music I can't do and I have to keep the producer informed.  So, back to rehearsal reports.

I think it all comes down to "What purpose do they serve?", "Is there really a necessity?", and "Is there a better way?"

Tools of the Trade / Re: EDITING: Progam to edit sound effects?
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 01:25 am »
For PC-based systems, I like MAGIX Audio Cleaning Lab--current version is about $50, but well-worth the money.  Especially if you are using old recordings or have a ground hum through your board when you do a live recording, it will clean most of the noise up.

Tools of the Trade / Re: THE Sharpie topic
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 01:17 am »
Rule #1 for Sharpies--never let anyone borrow your Sharpie, even for a minute. It never comes back . . .

Tools of the Trade / Re: Do you prefer Word or Excel?
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 01:11 am »
Neither--I prefer Access.  I do my Actor Plot in Excel and a few things still in Word that are easier in Word than either Excel or Access, but for data manipulation, Access is best!

Tools of the Trade / Re: Discussing drills
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 01:03 am »
I've had both.  Makita doesn't have the torque that Dewalt has, nor the battery life.  Go with Dewalt.  You will never regret buying the best.

Tools of the Trade / Re: Filemaker?
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 12:54 am »
I have written an Access database program that I use primarily for Contact Lists, Attendance Sheets, To Do, and Q Sheets--including combining all for a Master Q list. 

What would you want in this program?  Do you have copies of the forms that would be most helpful?  Do you know what kind of data you would like to track?

Articles from the Old Site / Re: Stage Management History?
« on: Nov 04, 2012, 12:30 am »
Linda Apperson references the following book in her book Stage Managing and Theater Etiquette:

Townsend, Stephen.  Short Account of the Amateur Dramatic Club of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital.  London:  Knight Publications, 1888.

If you have the time during college, take an EMT class--more advanced than first-aid.  You don't have to take the corresponding state test, but it has helped me a lot more than just the basic first aid class.  Also, you get CPR & AED for the Professional Rescuer--helpful for when you have kids in the show, etc.

Unless my stage manager is barely tolerated by the cast (which I've had sometimes), my AD does not step on the toes of the SM, unless the SM asks for help:

1)  work with actors off-stage running lines
2)  help actors bring out their characters in a scene already blocked
3)  block a scene I haven't gotten to yet that I think they can handle (usually with lots of advance notice and my approval of their blocking stage pictures and notation)
4)  anything else I ask them to do that is more as a personal assistant (like run to my car and get something out of it, taking director notes during a run-through or a performance, etc.) rather than integral to the running of rehearsals or the show

Occasionally during first run-through or first dress (no tech), my AD will assist the SM crew as needed.  Usually these are very busy days.

I'm surprised you forgot to call breaks.  Usually an actor will remind me to call them.  And I'll reply, "I was just going to do that."   ;)

I use transfer binders (press board with really long metal holders) and store them flat in the school's filing cabinet.  I sometimes return to them to look up vendor information or to pull a scene for an acting competition.  Most of the time, they just gather dust.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: ASMing: How to ASM
« on: Nov 03, 2012, 11:44 pm »
If you have ASM'd before this job, figure out what part of the job you enjoyed and what was challenging.  Discuss that with your future employer.  Let them know what you want to work on and what you know you can handle well.

The employer probably already knows what they're going to give you, but if you're upfront with what will be easy and what will be a challenge, they will know what to expect and when to inspect to make sure you accomplished the hard stuff.

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