Friday, January 17, 2014

Tech Rehearsal for Act 1

The directors' meeting ran longer than scheduled, and tech started a few minutes late. But here we go.

Show #1
Andy Jensen instructs the band to start from end of intro music (which by the way has chords that remind me of "It's Business Time" by Flight of the Conchords).

This is a musical, show within a show, with a potential to be political correct in multiple ways. The playwrights showed up this morning with not just a script, but also sheet music. All songs that you've heard before, with lyrics you've never imagined!

Rachel Sedwick in show #1
Photo: Omar Willey
Tech'ing a musical in 20 minutes has it's challenges. But the cast and band are troopers, and make the best of their time. Shift to transition lights, and we go into show #2.

Show #2
Actors are in place, mumbling their lines as the band strums randomly. The director is in discussions with lighting designer, and even though I am sure progress is being made, it seems to the untrained eye that tech has stalled. Show 3 cast has arrived ahead of schedule.

Finally Stan Shields calls out to Lisa Viertel with instructions, while lighting designer continues to talk into the head set. With 7 minutes left in show #2's tech time, we are finally ready to start at the top of the show. The band plays a very Film Noir theme, and the actors take over. A couple of false starts later, we have finally made our way through show #2. This theme of "Last Stand" lends nicely to conflict - doesn't it!?

Show #3
John Langs starts with talking to the band for a few minutes, and then switches to lights. From noir, we switch to game-show theme. We're in a spelling bee.

Sean and Mark work on the sound cues
Photo: Omar Willey
Timing between the band, lights and actors is critical to the structure of this show. During our conversation over lunch John was working on how he will communicate all this information in what he called "a drive by speed" to the band and lights, and I can tell he's driven to get through all the moments critical to story telling before his tech time runs out. John may be a virgin director at 14/48, but his veteran chops are showing.

Hard to get a full sense of this play in this cue-to-cue, but I can tell it has some poignant bits.

Show #4
The band outro's with a spelling bee inspired song and we setup our class room for show #4. The designers have found us some really cool lab equipment. Anthony discusses the top of scene with band and lights. As soon as we get that setup, we skip to the end of the play. Easy tech - no internal cues!


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