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Messages - Balletdork

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Stage Management: Other / Re: Sming for Dance
« on: Sep 13, 2006, 11:21 am »
Just a follow up- The classes went really well, all my feedback forms were thumbs up and smiley faces (or so I'm told.)

Thanks for all of your suggestions!

I recently discovered that a  "There are 46 of you, and only one of me- please be patient."  with a smile (or sometimes a grimace) and a pat calms everyone down nicely.

I think knowing that they WILL get a turn to have their voices heard and that they WILL be taken care of is helpful.

Also, I tell them that unless they write it down (whatever it is) or they witness me writing it down- it doesn't count, it never happened!

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Blocking Charts?
« on: Sep 13, 2006, 09:44 am »
Ah, the great debate between notation and maps! We've been having this discussion for centuries in ballet! I combine both- of course, with a score, not a script. So I'll end up with a line of score and then a line of boxes, and so on until you reach the end.... sometimes a couple lines of score, it depends on how much dance is in a particular peice. If Cinderella is sweeping for 32 bars before her first pas de bourree- chances are good that I'll have a half page of so of score before a map box.

There are millions of great ways to take blocking- none of them are 'wrong' --- the trick is to find what works best for YOU!

I'd definately be interested!

SMNetwork Archives / Re: Essential Theatre Books
« on: Sep 13, 2006, 09:38 am »
In Search of Theater by Eric Bentley

The Director's Companion by Mel Shapiro

A Practical Handbook for the Actor by Melissa Bruder, Lee Michael Cohn, Madeleine Olnek, Nathaniel Pollack, Robert Previto, Scott Zigler

Backstage Handbook an illustrated almanac of technical information by Paul Carter

Designing with Light an introduction to stage lighting by J. Michael Gillette

The Stage Management Handbook by Daniel Ionazzi

The Dancer's Body Book by Allegra Kent


101 Stories of the Great Ballet's George Balanchine

These are all basic introduction type books- I still use them to teach from!

Tools of the Trade / Re: What is Gaffer Tape?
« on: Sep 13, 2006, 09:04 am »
That's a great one! Held the bumper on in LA traffic- good on you!

Tools of the Trade / Re: What is Gaffer Tape?
« on: Sep 12, 2006, 10:35 am »
You are correct- shur tape is much better!

College and Graduate Studies / Re: College advice
« on: Sep 10, 2006, 08:31 pm »
2 reccomendations:

BA route- University of Alabama at Birmingham in Birmingham, Alabama (where I've been on staff over the pat 7 years)

BFA route- Wrigth State University in Dayton, Ohio (where I went to school for the 6 years previous to that!)

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: prompt books
« on: Sep 10, 2006, 08:13 pm »
I purged most of my shows just last year! The books were cluttering up my parents garage- so they mostly got tossed. I did keep a couple (my final college show, the 1st show I ever SM'd) but mostly they were recycled.

All the ballet's shows and regional shows I've done in the past 7 years belog to the theater or ballet, and fortunately I still work for most of them so if I want to borrow for master classes it's not a problem.

I also keep a big binder of different paperwork I've created over the years in my ofice for ASM's and Master Classes.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Auditions
« on: Sep 10, 2006, 08:04 pm »
Also- be upbeat and friendly to all the auditioners- chances are that you're the last person they see before they audition... a last smile could make a difference!   :)

Tools of the Trade / Re: What is Gaffer Tape?
« on: Sep 10, 2006, 10:28 am »
At the ballet we use gaff tape to put our marley down, rather than actual marley tape- marley tape being even more expensive...

Employment / Re: how long do you wait for a response?
« on: Sep 05, 2006, 04:30 pm »
In defense of those of us hiring and not job-searching... I rarely reply to any resume unless I am truely interested in hiring that person. I will not waste my time or yours in an interview which I do not believe will fill the position.

Ex; If I'm hiring an ASM for dance and I get 50 resume's- 10 of which come from people with experience in dance, and the other 40 have no experience in dance... I do not reply to the other 40. Which is not to say I wouldn't give you feedback if you called or emailed me- But I won't seek you out unless I feel strongly that you will fit my position.

This year I was looking for an ASM for my ballet company for 27 weeks of work. I had 58 responses. I interviewed the 3 people I felt would best fit the position based on their resume & cover letter. The other 55 didn't hear a peep. (If this is you- i hope this explains WHY.)

I'm betting most people do the same... not to discourage young stage managers, but rather to keep ourselves from going crazy writing rejection letters!

On the other hand I do send out letters to all the auditioning dancers (this year just over 200)- but these people all attended an audition or class and spent the $300+ to fly to BHM, stay in a hotel, made an audition DVD or Video and full-out auditioned.

I don't know- I suppose SM's get the unfair end of the stick!

Employment / Re: to get hired...
« on: Sep 05, 2006, 04:14 pm »
My degree is in SM- sigh.

However, when I'm looking for ASM's I look for experience- which does not have to be in an educational setting. Frankly, experience OUTSIDE of university is more attractive to me when hiring!

Stage Management: Other / Re: Sming for Dance
« on: Aug 31, 2006, 03:07 pm »
Time is the reason I'm requesting suggestions! A total of 5 hours of 2 days- yikes!

Stage Management: Other / Sming for Dance
« on: Aug 28, 2006, 11:02 am »
I'm teaching some SMing for dance Master Classes for USITT soon- does anyone have any suggestions for discussion topics?

Any ideas are welcome!


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