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Messages - CTsometimeSM

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If all the world's a stage, where is my script?


Community theatre, cast drawn from the borderline professionals in the area for a fairly risqué production (a lot of simulated drug use on stage).

Rumor (and only rumor) is that members of the cast have, in the past, used and/or sold drugs during productions, in the theater.  I may be coming into this as the production SM, somewhere around 3 weeks prior to opening for a 6 week run.  All the actors do sign a contract stating a fairly standard no illicit substances, which has been inconsistently enforced at this venue in the past.

My inclination is (coming in part way through the process) - talking to the director so he is clear the policy is not at the theatre, and sober when they get there.  Trying to find a way to give the same to the cast without being too obvious.  Giving it in the pre-tech speech (which I always do so everyone knows what the plan is) makes some sense, but is that too late (I will have been there for at least a week by that point).  

Given it is community theater, and there are no understudies, and this may be a thing that has happened and been acceptable in the past, any suggestions if the director/producers seem unwilling to enforce (to include dismissing actors?).  Walking away is an option, but not the most constructive one.

Edit added label to subject line-Rebbe

Tools of the Trade / Re: New Flexbinder
« on: Aug 06, 2009, 10:19 am »
Apparently everyone is getting is now out of stock...

Concert, and I wasn't the SM, but the headliner went on well over 90 minutes late:  He decided not to show up until 60 minutes after he was supposed to go on, then spent at least 15 minutes arguing that he and his entourage should be allowed to bring their guns in with them.  And 15 minutes to get himself ready.

If you can find somewhere stocking haloween type decorations, look for a whole foot-then adjust it.  I did the show in HS, but don't remember exactly what we used.  Possibly a dense foam (think the stuff inside a pelican case) carved, covered in liquid latex, then painted.

Sorry-no help on the spot, all the places I know are way too far away to be of any use.


Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Community Theater
« on: Mar 30, 2009, 07:39 pm »
They may also have a website with a "volunteer" section-may not get to the right person, but it may get you in the right direction.  Last one I worked at had a generic email address, and a day after I sent a note I had a call from one of the board members-and found myself ASM'ing a show that opened a week later (oh, and the "SM" was a dancer...that was an interesting run).  Above all be flexible, and have fun.

Students and Novice Stage Managers / Re: Working with animals?
« on: Mar 11, 2009, 06:14 pm »
Never had a monkey, but I seem to have some kind of attraction to dogs in shows (ok, mostly because I keep finding myself doing Wizard of Oz).

With any luck whoever owns/trains the monkey will be part of the production team (I can't imagine doing it otherwise, particularily with something as unusual as a monkey), and can give you some good idea on what the critter will require.  They should be managing it whenever it is off stage, and manage getting it ready and in the right place-at which point you can almost deal with the handler like any other performer as far as reminders, cues, warnings, etc.

Plan for more messes than typical backstage, and consider that it could break things both on and offstage.

Last, I would want to think about what happens if it gets loose/goes off script-onstage or off.

Tools of the Trade / Re: Useful applications for Blackberry
« on: Mar 06, 2009, 11:04 am »

Not sure if this is where I got it from orriginally.  I think I may have downloaded it on the fly on the BB, but this looks like the same program.

Seems very well put together.  I may just borrow bits of it (community theatre-many similar issues of not quite getting parts of tech).

I would suggest putting in a context that may make sense---a cue to cue is like a blocking rehearsal (which also is full of starts and stops) and pointing out that they have been rehearsing for weeks(months?), and this is the technicians' first time through.  Plus making sure they know (as mentioned above) that it isn't a "rehearsal" for them-it is for the techs, and the techs need them there like the actors need props to practice with (though that particular analogy may not be the best to use...)

Tools of the Trade / Re: Useful applications for Blackberry
« on: Feb 15, 2009, 09:01 pm »

Simple stopwatch that lets you set warnings-I set mine for 15 minutes, with 10 and 5 minute warnings.  All on vibrate, which is particularily usefull for a small show where I am SM from the deck and running around a lot.

Tools of the Trade / Re: Favorite Deck Flashlight?
« on: Feb 09, 2009, 12:00 pm »
I have one of the Petzel headlamps-taktika, I think.  It has interchangable lenses (the blue is almost a UV lense), various output settings, and runs on AA's-I really like it when I am doing high work/under the stage/confined anything.

I also have a Surefire-excellent brightness.  I use the Aviator, which in addition to the halogen bulb, it has 3 LED's (mine are red, as theatre use is secondary for this device, but blue is available).  Downside is the expense-both the flashlight and the batteries.

And the ubiquidous mini-mag.  I have the LED conversion, with the button switch on the end.  I also have a bit of blue gel cut to fit the lense.  This is by far the most common used, but the others have thier purposes.

Tools of the Trade / Re: Protecting your tools
« on: Jan 08, 2009, 12:45 pm »
I picked up a really cheap set of tools (couple screwdrivers, a hammer, pliers, etc) to loan out.  It lets me keep my better tools safe and available.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Re: cookies
« on: Dec 23, 2008, 06:53 pm »
Not really that much cookie, but it is right between a bunch of lines for them that would be bad if mumbled through over-dry mouths.

Stage Management: Plays & Musicals / Re: cookies
« on: Dec 23, 2008, 02:25 pm »
Wizard of Oz.  Royal Shakes version.  One of the opening scenes has Aunt Em brining a plate of cookies to the farm hands.  Now I just need to figure out a way to keep cookies moist-and hopefully only have to get/make them once a week...

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