Thursday, November 12, 2009

Signs I Know It's Tech Week: Camelot

Friday starts tech rehearsals for Camelot, which means this past week has been ASTOUNDINGLY busy. As such:

Indicators that Alina's Preping and Teching a Show (To Be Developed As Camelot Moves into Techs)
1. I've gotten in the shower with pencils still stuck in my hair.
2. I've eaten all three meals in the same room (the costume shop, of course).
3. All of my black clothes, jeans, and sweatshirts (is cold now!) have safety pins attached.
4. I don't know the time, day, or date.
4a. I can't hang on to any of that information either, and am likely to ask "is today Thursday?" repeatedly over the course of two or three days.
5. Pretzel with nutella is a perfectly acceptable breakfast, just as tea is lunch and cereal in milk is dinner. Midnight snack remains either tomato soup or ice cream.

Sure, I'm busy. But it's more the absurdity of what's happening and is going to happen over the next few days that has me so exhausted. Somehow, 21 actors, 10 interns, a handful of permanent staff, a smallish design team, a bunch of musicians, a few square acres worth of trees (in the form of a set), a positively epic number of costumes, enough lighting instruments to outshine the sun, and (if we do it right) lots of massive audiences are gonna combine to make theatre happen.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Let's Do This Thing

Lots of things in my head tonight. I saw a really good show at Round House with a bunch of other interns-- a modern-ish adaptation of Dorian Grey. Among other things, they had a BEAUTIFUL double turntable that was incredibly smooth. and they used it SO WELL. There were two moments in particular that earned seat-flailing from me and vocal appreciation from the audience. Just turntable movements, mind you! And the car ride back was filled with the bubbly sort of "Oh, and that moment was AWESOME!" "Yeah, but I'm not sure how I feel about this choice." "Oh, it worked for me once this one thing happened; then it clicked" conversation that I love. There's one point in the show where Dorian says something to the effect of "art doesn't make people do things; it merely reflects our potential for committing evil acts" only he says it with more grace and passion. The line falls flat, as it should, because not one character or audience member (and at that point, not even Dorian) believes it, given the events of the play. But as I suspect it was intended to do, the line made me think about a show's responsibility to its audience as well as an audience's responsibility to a show. Nothing new or profound on either front, but mah brainz are spinnin'. Oh theatre, I love you.

And then I came back and drank wine with one of the artistic directors and heard her stories of touring shows in Germany before the wall came down. Oh theatre, I love you.

Before all this happened, I got to walk through the Night Must Fall set for the first time. My first walk through is one of those silly magical moments that always makes me giddy and eager for techs to start. Suddenly, everything theoretical is real. There's a real window! And look at the texture on the floor! And oh, wow, here's how that wonky entrance will work! Sure, the set's not done, costumes aren't finished, and I haven't seen a hint of lights or sound. But set walk through means we might just have a show.

(Say it with me now.) Oh theatre, I love you.

Monday, April 20, 2009

I See a River! -- Urinetown

I seem to pick up the odd jobs in the costume shop (make a 3 foot doll with a photo of my face on it! Take a wig with a 1950's updo and make it look like half the head has been shaved! Sew a dress with nearly 100 feet of ruffles!) but this show pretty much wins at crazy. In the last month or so, I have:
- made bloody body parts compete with gnaw marks
- made a recreation of a costume dress, then bloodied and shredded it
- beat costumes with rocks
- added blood stains on a shirt to mimic the look of someone who fell 30 feet into a gravel pit
- attacked costumes with straight razors, scissors, steak knives, and a litany of other sharp things
- dyed a whole bunch of fabric to get it juuuuust the right colour
- splashed bleach on lots of costumes
- kicked a rock wall while wearing costume shoes to distress them
- rolled down a hill in a costume, again to distress
- cut the toe off a shoe