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Messages - Jason2025

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Uploaded Forms / Re: Dance Notation and Cue Sheets
« on: May 11, 2010, 04:35 pm »
Hey those sheets are great, could be very handy. I'm SM for a new work this fall, I may just use them :)



Oh, this is a fun show if done well! I was ASM on this many years ago, and while I don't have any specific advice, one gag I remember that worked well was a part where one character hands the another a dirty diaper and our props person put a huge dab of peanut butter in it. I don't remember if that blocking was in the script, but something to think about if it is :)


I call dance from backstage, but I prefer to call regular plays and musical theatre from the booth since you can better see blocking for visuals, etc.

The main reason I call dance from backstage is we don't have an ASM on the shows, and since many cues are on entrances, I can anticipate the cues better seeing the dancers. I've had no problem calling visual cues, with the wireless headsets these days I can stick a few cues in my head and wander around as needed.

This all said, I've heard the argument before from stage managers who feel they MUST call from backstage so they can be there if something goes wrong but in my opinion, that is for your ASM or crew chief to deal with, if you have them.

Every situation will be different, so you need to decide what works best for you :)



I jumped into stage managing ballet about two years ago after many years of working with stage and musical theatre and it was certainly a challenge compounded by the fact that I usually see one, maybe two rehearsals before we hit the theatre. As you may have gathered from here, there really isn't any one way to prepare your calling sheets, just do whatever you need in order to call the show correctly.

Our company performs to track and sometimes to live music, both of which requires a different technique. With tracks, what I do is load all the cues into my Macbook running Q-Lab, and I actually trigger the cues myself from backstage. I can use the time on the track along with the waveform display to call certain cues, and use visuals for other cues, it all depends. It is very important that you have your sound guy running a parallel CD just in case, but Q-Lab has never failed me. I built myself an illuminated GO button that makes it super easy :)

With live music, just like musical theatre, the conductor is your friend, and many cues can be taken from them. I will write down the times from run throughs for each cue, but with live music of course they will never be accurate so I use those times as a guide, letting me know how long I have approximately until the next cue

Though at first it was stressful, I've always had an ear for music and really like dance, so I've found my calling it seems, no pun intended :)


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