Words of Wisdom

Youth is wasted on the young.

Monday, 1 October 2007

Best Shot Monday: The Musical

This is my Best Shot from the last week at The Musical. Look at all these vibrant, excited kids, full of the joy of life and the magic of being involved in theatre. This was taken on Thursday night as they waited outside the theatre between the matinee and the evening performance.
And here's what captivates us. The stage.
This was taken from prompt side where I was ensconced in my little Stage Manager's position. I love the height of the curtains and the side light casting long shadows across the stage.

One guess as to what THIS represents! Yes, it is the endless hours of sewing I did for costumes.
The purple thing is one of the infamous 'gypsy waistcoats'...although truth be known they had nothing to do with gypsies.
These exuberant two are my lighting girls. They were stunners! Capable, reliable, mostly on task..they left the boys for dead although I have to say that after three days of me explaining exactly what I needed the Tech boys did rise to the occasion.
At the beginning of each day, the cast and crew sat in the theatre to have the roll called. This was a time of great conviviality and a chance to give feedback and production 'notes'. Here's most of them waiting for the producer to do her thing. Look at our lovely theatre! The only downside is the seats which are the same ones that were there when I last worked in the theatre 27 years ago!

These ones are really for my family in the UK. Many school holidays were spent n the Scott Theatre. I think my Dad is the only family member who has not performed on the stage here. (Although maybe SmokyJo was only backstage...refresh my memory Sis)...
Look what they've done to the courtyard which used to be a grey tiled, prison style exercise yard. I'm sure the gumtree at the rhs wasn't there before. It's a pretty cool theatre though isn't it? It was originally part of the teacher's college and was used as a training theatre for drama students and the like. As such it had all mod cons, stage revolves, trapdoors, massive lighting rigs, access to the stage from all directions and good sized wings (unlike many theatres). This was the gang waiting around on the Thursday night. I think they'd just finished having an ice fight. The picture doesn't capture it as I was too late as usual but the excitement that night was extraordinary. High as kites on life they all were.

Now look what they've done to the dressing rooms!!!!! The size of the dressing rooms was the real downer in the old days. The dancers were always packed into the Green Room as there was not enough room in the dressing rooms for everyone. Now they have knocked walls out and extended back under the stage and under the road behind the building so there are dressing rooms this size on both sides of the main corridor.

This is how I've been spending my days for the last 5 weeks.....with a head full of costume racks. Recognise the dress on the end Mum?? Debenhams in Romsey I think it was...circa 1995. Recycling is a great part of costume coordination. Don't worry, I got the dress back!

Onstage after the show for 'notes'. Those are the gates to 'Heaven' in the background. Not quite the impressive structures I had envisaged......
And so, the musical is over. I didn't get any production shots of course as I was too busy calling cues (standby tabs, standby sfx 5, standby AV 12, standby LX 67.......) but I'm hoping there may be some available on the school intranet which I can pinch. It was a fantastic week. Exhausting but exhilarating. I really bonded with the tech crew as we wisecracked our way through the performance (watch out on youtube for the video they secretly took of me dancing side stage).
Me: so, sweepstakes; how far downstage do you think these two will come tonight?
Spot Tech: first tab.....
AV: by the sofa..........
Lighting: they'll go exactly as far as they always do.......
She was right they never came any further down......no matter WHAT the director said to them.

On the last night the Techies approached me with furtive and conspiratorial glances. "Can we have a word with you Mrs A?" It transpired that this was the last musical for their AV teacher and they wanted to do something special. It was my job to get him on stage while the Techies, all in black and wearing aviator sunglasses, marched down both aisles to the tune of 'The Eye of the Tiger' and paraded onto the stage to make a presentation to their 'Chief'. It was fantastic! I was called upon to come up with very inventive stories as to why the Techies couldn't join us on stage to start with and to distract the chief at the end of the show when he was trying to herd them all down.....I think he figured it out eventually. I'm a hopeless liar it must be said.

Did I ever wish I was onstage again? Maybe. I miss dancing particularly. I can't sing anymore although that didn't stop me turning off my headset mike and croaking along at the top of my voice to 'Swing Low Sweet Chariot' (it's OK, there was a chorus around a mike in the wings so I wasn't ruining anything) and also bellowing the last few choruses of 'A Pilgrim People' sung to the tune of Jupiter from Holst's 'The Planets'.

We praise you God the Father
We praise you Christ the Son
We praise you Holy Spirit
The best is yet to come......


I always loved these mirrors.



For an unbiased and hilarious critique of the show (and my response to same) check out the Bestie's Blog.

For other Best Shots

little bsm button

18 comments:

kim said...

some nice shots. I particularly like the first and last. I think my favorite thing in the last is the pair of pink Chuck Taylors. Sounds like a blast!

Dawn said...

way to capture it all! I love the first shot.

Kelly Bera said...

Great group shot! I'm sure that is one they will all treasure! It looks like so much fun!

Brittany said...

It looks like all of your hard work really paid off!!! Congratulations! :)

The first shot is REALLY nice. I agree with Kelly, they will really cherish that picture someday. :)

Anna said...

Hooray! I love the rush I used to get at that age from theater, and I love how you have brilliantly captured that sense of comraderie in that first photo. I enjoyed the tour, too!

and yes, lovely Indian Summer here, still nearly 80 on the northeast coast of the US on the first day of October, I'll take it!

Christina said...

Happy dance for you!!! It's all OVER! All your hard work has paid off. It looks like a fabulous performance. But you said your pictures aren't "quality." I beg to disagree...you've got some real stunner there, like the first 3 and the very last one.

Sara said...

oh how much fun!

Melissa said...

I love the shot of the stage with the curtains and the light! Thanks for sharing!

ktjrdn said...

Even though all the sweing is done (whew!) I'm sure you're going to miss it. It sounds like it was a great time.

carrie said...

Sounds like so much fun - makes me yearn for the stage again, too! I love the shot of the empty stage.

Sounds like it was successful - congratulations to you. Now, take a bow (and a breath!).

Maya said...

Great shots! Love how you captured all of this. Looks like you put in lots of time!

chaoticfamily said...

Excellent - love the first one it's so fun!

natalie said...

Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you for giving us a glimpse of what you've been up to!!! I so miss the days of theatre past after seeing your pictures. I might just go see a show this weekend.

melody is slurping life said...

What an experience. I'm so glad you enjoyed the thrill of the theater again. The photos are all super, and I love the one where they are lying, woven together. And the stage is another fave.

Ready to do it again...next week? :)

Mandaroo said...

That looks like a lot of work! You mentioned Eye of the Tiger and it made me think of Catherine Tate's twirler girl (have you seen that, it's on BBC?) Hope they had a wonderful show. I just posted about a very, very tiny production my girl was in. Maybe she'll make it to a big stage some day like yours!

Mandaroo said...

Oh, and btw love that first shot, they look like an awesome group of kids!

Melody A. said...

So what are you going to talk about now? Thanks for sharing the whole experience with us. And I will be looking you up on YouTube.

Cari said...

I love the first shot. It sounds like a wonderful and extremely busy experience! I hope you really enjoyed it. Off to read the review... :)