Thursday, March 29, 2012

Absurd Acts: Part I

You remember my post about the musical being over? You do? Good. That was what, a couple of days ago? Well, we now have an entirely different play cast.

Talk about not losing time.

Tuesday and Wednesday were audition and callback days for "Night of Absurd Acts". Vince is directing a one hour long one act play for the second act, and three students are directing 20 minute one acts for the first act. So we had to cast 4 plays. Curio & Valentine Are PissedBald SopranoBikini Islands, and Waiting for Godot. Not really me, but the directors. I had a little bit of input.

The first day we took groups of 8 and then actors were put into groups of 2 and read for one of the 4 plays, and that was it. We talked and then called back actors for Wednesday. Callbacks are different in that the actors actually read for parts they're being considered for. There was a lot of in and out for people, some people were being considered for one part, some for several. Some of them we got what we needed quickly and could send them away, and some people read a ton.

Then, there was the task of actually casting the plays. Vince had a rule that people cannot be double cast. So, you couldn't be Mr. Smith in Bald Soprano and Vladimir in Waiting for Godot. So while some people got cast right away, some the directors had to fight for. In the end, I'm extremely proud of our casts and am thankful for the amazing turnout we had at auditions - I hope people come back and audition again.

Waiting for Godot
Vladimir: Meredith Warren
Estragon: Maddie Goodman

Bikini Islands
Zach: Jake Vann
James: Carter Smith
Doctor: Kylea Mathison
Boy: Jessica Murphree

Bald Soprano
Mr. Smith: Daniel Keller
Mrs. Smith: Tomi Heady
Mr. Martin: April Quinn
Mrs. Martin: Austin Brady
Mary: Tessa Fulmer

Curio & Valentine Are Pissed
Orsino: Eli Brown
Olivia/Feste: Katy Hurley
Curio: Robby Andersen
Valentine: Ari Juster
Fabian: Michael Keefe
Maria: Sandra A.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Theater Memes

I found this on, and I do not know the original owner. This is not mine, however it is HILARIOUS. And very true. I will take it down if need be.


Monday, March 26, 2012

TOMMY: abridged


TOMMY: Part XXII (the end)

It's over.

Saturday presented it's challenges. At the beginning of the show our guitar player broke some strings and had to spend some time not playing so he could fix that problem, which freaked me out. Luckily, I had the actors to calm me down. Other than a missed cue the show went on as planned and was just as awesome as Friday's show. It was bittersweet at the end, because it was over. But honestly, it was also a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. We gave cards and presents to Fish, Avery and Vince. I also got a card signed by the cast and a rose, plus Audrey's parents gave me a bouquet of flowers.

After the show we went to the cast party, which is always fun. You get to know a lot about people you may or may not want to find out, but it's a loud, crazy time to be with friends and unwind from the process.

Sunday was the strike, when all the people get together one last time to put away all the props and costumes and set pieces to their rightful homes. We spent a couple hours organizing and then we did a fun activity organized by Fischer: perform an abridged version of our two hour show in 10 minutes. It was crazy and loud and didn't make sense in some parts but was hilarious and a wonderful ending bonding activity. If I can get my computer to work, I'll try and put it on the blog (Avery taped it).

This process is unforgettable. The cast and crew are unforgettable. It's over, but I'll always remember. And that's the best part.

the cast and crew signed a poster. it has it's place on my wall.


Saturday, March 24, 2012


Wow, it's already Saturday. Time flies, doesn't it?

Wednesday's dress was better than Tuesdays (well, I hope it wouldn't be worse) but we still had a lot of work to do. I took a lot of notes and was rather scared for our opening Thursday show.

I shouldn't have been so worried.

Thursday's show, while it had it's moments of panic, was amazing. A great opening show, and I am so proud of all the people that came together to pull it off. The costume moms don't ever get enough credit for the work they do. And of course there are the directors (obviously), the house crew, the backstage crew, and the actors. We did it, and then we did it again.

Friday's show (which is historically, in my opinion, always the best show), was even better. We rocked it! About 15 minutes before the show started I had a little bit of a mental breakdown from exhaustion (From Monday to Friday I had spent 71.5 hours at school, and 48.5 hours at home), but once the show started there wasn't any reason to worry (okay, that's not completely true. I worry a lot).

After the show the cast and crew went to Village Inn, as per tradition.

As we are high school kids at 10pm on a Friday night after a stressful week, we (and by "we" I mean the actors) probably weren't setting the best example for 8 year old Eliot, who accompanied us. Nonetheless, it was a fun time and I find that when we're at VI a lot of people bond and become closer as a group. Which is great, because we have one more show tonight and it needs to be our best ever, and I know it can get there.

I'm excited, and I slept in. It can only be a good day.

Jake, Michael P. holding Robby, and Dana @ VI


Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Yesterday I left rehearsal at 9:30pm. Today, 9:50pm. The things I do for theatre.

Today's rehearsal went leaps and bounds better than yesterday's...but we found a whole new set of problems. Mics were added today so that was a huge aspect we had to account for, there is a set change that is so hectic we haven't even figured out how to do it yet, there was a flyrail added, entrances missed, etc. Also, one of our actors is very sick with the flu and hasn't been able to attend the past 2 dress rehearsals. I do hope he feels better!

An interesting part of today's rehearsal was the fire alarms that were set off by us. We have mist that goes with our lights and it fogged up too much and the alarms went off, and there was a band concert tonight. So that was 20-30 minutes we missed of rehearsal (don't you love my priorities?).

Problem solving is key, at this point. So many things to fix.

After the run (which ran later than expected, we stopped a lot), notes were given and everything was cleaned and we got to go home.

I hope we progress by leaps and bounds tomorrow too, so Thursday's show will go off without a hitch.

Here's hoping.


TOMMY: Part XIX (Dress Rehearsal)

Guess how many hours I stayed at school last night? 14. Too many.

This is what dress rehearsal does to me. A full day of school after a break (intersession between third and fourth quarter was last week) and then 6 hours of rehearsal.

After we ate, we started with running the end of Act 2 because we didn't get there on our Thursday intersession rehearsal (I was gone on college visits during that time). Then, we started to prepare for our run. The band set up in front of house left, Mason was at the sound board, Josh (his assistant) was stationed backstage left switching out mics, Jerry our lights guy was playing around with the lights and we had a lot of people in the audience: including Fischer, Avery, Vince, Bill (our sets guy), and Fish's cousin, among others. Audrey and Tessa were backstage left, and Lily and I were backstage right. We had a ton of stuff to figure out before the run even started, but after sets and props were done we started. It was dark backstage, so we had flashlights and lamps.

I had made a Stage Manager checklist, of all of the various things we have to make sure to get done during the show, which is a lot. I have a fly-rail, there are sets to be set up backstage, actors to make sure they're in the right place, and anything that goes wrong we have to fix. For example, our gurney was being finicky, and we had to get Vince to help us fix it. So many things we had to take care of I can't even remember it all since it was such a blur, and it was only yesterday (pus I'm too lazy to get out my list right now as I'm typing). A two-minute intermission and we started Act Two, not even getting through all of it.

After Fish's notes and all the actors had left everyone else had to clean everything up, which held us back about an hour. By the end of it my brain was completely fried, and I just had to go home and sleep.

Let's do it again today!


Sunday, March 11, 2012

On the Town

Hello! Yesterday my whole family plus Audrey went on a field trip to the Durham Western Heritage Museum in downtown Omaha to see two visiting exhibits: Drawn to Fashion: Illustrations of Mary Mitchell and CUT! Costumes and the Cinema. We went through CUT! first, which had period costume pieces from major films, such as The Duchess, Sherlock Holmes, Finding Neverland, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Phantom of the Opera. They were amazing, especially to Audrey and I with our theatre background.

After that exhibit we saw fashion drawings illustrated by Mary Mitchell, who worked for well known Omaha clothing stores. It featured about 150 detailed drawings.

Audrey and I with our men.

Stage Managers <3

We quite enjoyed our strawberry malts at the old fashioned soda shop.

After the museum my mom, Audrey and I shopped in the Old Market until 5:00, when we went to the Orpheum for a backstage tour of Rock of Ages.

When I went to a gallery opening for my wonderful art teacher Jim Jacobi, I met Carole Zacek, a truly magnificent person who is a terrific costumer, part of Local 42 and does work backstage at the Orpheum (also movies and other small plays). We got to talking at the opening and she mentioned that she could give us (my sister and I) a backstage tour of Wicked! Needless to say, we were extremely excited. After that amazing tour, we went again recently for CATS and now for Rock of Ages. It pays to have connections! This was the first time I brought Audrey with us, and she loved it.

It's so interesting to see a professional play and everything that goes into it. We saw the costumes, the dressing rooms, the laundry room, Stage Right, Stage Left, we even got to walk on the stage to see the set pieces! I am very thankful to have a friend like Carole.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012


I have had a realization.
There are 15 days until show opens March 22.
[The show runs March 22, 23, 24]
There are 4 rehearsals until Tech Week.
There are 7 rehearsals until show opens.

This freaks me out a little bit. Scratch that - a lot! We have so much to accomplish.

This week we have worked through Act 2 (Monday) and Act 1 (yesterday and today).

It's slow going. Actors (and everyone) need to kick it into gear, and work really hard to focus through the rest of the process. We still need some props and set pieces, but now we have most of them. Audrey and I have stopped taking blocking notes and have just worked on placement of props and sets and who is responsible for them. Also just helping with problem areas in general. If something needs to be done, we do it.

Which brings me to my wonderful news: our stage crew! We have two lovely ladies, Lily and Tessa, as our stage hands for the play. They came to rehearsal today so we could talk them through what they're going to be doing and to see some of the play itself. Vince has been here the past couple of days helping with the flow of things. Mason has also been attending, our sound board operator.

Unfortunately, next week is intersession (as a student I say that's wonderful, but as a stage manager it comes with not the greatest timing). Also, the rest of this week is out because the show choirs are going out of town (practically our whole cast). Which means that the next rehearsal we have is Monday, where we go over Act 2. Then two half days are choreography rehearsals, and the Thursday we don't have school is an all day rehearsal. Bad news: I cannot attend that all day rehearsal because I will be on college visits...darn me for wanting an education. And then: TECH WEEK (sorry for the mild profanity, but it's also known as Hell Week). Then shows. Then over.


However, the week after this musical is over there are auditions for the One Acts.

Welcome to the life of a Stage Manager.


Friday, March 2, 2012


I didn't take pictures of today's rehearsal - but we FINISHED! We blocked the finale today. Hooray! All of the cast is now called to every rehearsal we have left, which amounts to seven until a dress rehearsal. This makes me stressed.

Here are my prop/set lists. They are unfinished and always changing.

250 costumes, and millions of props and sets. Yay for the life of a stage manager.

Also, I've finished all of my interviews for the video part of my senior project. Almost done!