Monday, November 26, 2007

Guys and Dolls 2004

Guys and Dolls was another fun one for Maddie. Puck and I did a little painting one the set and I helped out with costumes a little bit.

Maddie had the idea of putting a tiny monkey (ala King Kong) on top of the Empire State Building.

She got a big kick out of that one. It was hers and the tech directors little joke

Once Upon Camelot 2004

Once Upon Camelot 2004

Our first attempt at making papier mache on a big scale. We learned a great deal in the process. The trees turned out pretty good and the next time we made trees they were quite a bit better. This show had living trees as well and those costumes were fun. I still have them stored up in my attic costume shop. The girls had a rough time walking in them, but I thought they were cute

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Once Upon Camelot 2004

Every three years or so the school does an all school unit on the Renaissance. We try to coordinate the play to go with the topic and so end up with a few castles :) This was a fun show and had some crazy characters. It even had human rocks. They had lines so it wasn't totally awful playing a rock in Middle School. I split the jester into twins so two girls could have a part and they did a wonderful job.

Nicholas Nickleby 2003

Maddie's first High School play and I adapted a velvet umpire waisted dress for her character of Fanny Squeers... She also played Miss Snivilichee, one of the theatrical troupe. I had a Queen of Hearts costume that a dear friend had whipped up for a Halloween party of ours. He had made the thing in only one day and it was fabulous. Of course I had to take it in quite a bit to get it to fit tiny Maddie. The same costume has been used for both Alice in Wonderland plays for the Queen so it has gotten some good use

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Birds 2003

Puck built a beautiful set. It was the tallest set to date before he built Jabberwock. My biggest challenge were the magic stalks that had to grow on the stage. It took a while to figure out how to build them so they could be hidden until they needed to grow. That is where is is helpful to live with the tech director :)

Whenever they appeared they got a great "Awwwwwww" from the audience

I hope we can do that play again. I have those magic bean stalks stored away for safe keeping just in case

The Birds 2003 The Masks

This was my favorite play that we ever put on. It was not a favorite with the kids however and I really never understood why. the costumes were fun, the makeup was fun. I guess it was a little too highbrow for them.

Anyhow it called for a narrator which I transformed into a Greek Chorus. It was mainly sixthgrade students. They each created their own half mask. I wanted them to be able to speak and be heard, but at the same time work and look like a group... a single unity telling the story of the play. They carried tall staffs and each entrance they put another thing into their staffs to represents the scene... we had snow and sun and rain and wind and finally birds

Sherlock Holmes 2002

Sherlock Holmes & the Case of Moriarity's Meanacing Mayhem

I added a Busker scene to this show to cover up a scene change. The boy playing the banjo was a guitar player and I taught him how to play a few chords on the banjo for the scene. Maddie played the other part of the duo. It also allowed us to throw in quite a few more characters as city people. They sang "Ive got a loverly bunch of coconuts"

He is playing my dad's old banjo. There was no way I was loaning out mine!

Again there is a lot of our furniture on the stage including the bookcase which has almost as big a resume as any of our actors.

Monday, November 19, 2007

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court 2001

The very first show ever put on in our theater and the first Middle School play after 7 years.

I just volunteered to help out and dragged Puck kicking and screaming into designing the set. We had absolutely no budget and had to beg borrow and steal to get paint and set decorations. All in all it turned out pretty well

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Once Upon a Mattress 2000

Once Upon a Mattress was the second play that our Methodist Minister put on. Godspell was the year before, but I never got any pictures of it. We helped with costumes and the set on that one.

Puck was the technical director for Mattress and Maddie and I helped him build it. It was challenging to build that great high bed in an extra low ceilinged theater. I believe it was the last play ever done in that theater before our Performing Arts Center was built.

He made the mattresses by carving into foam and tucking fabric in to look like stacked up mattresses.

I painted the stone along with Maddie's help and some other students. Maddie hung around so much they gave her a part in the play by adding a chamber maid. I made her costume for the show and up until a few years ago it still fit her. She was so funny in the part.

One performance when they were doing their dance a large weight was left on the stage. It was a prop weight that said something like 100 lbs or something on it. Well Maddie knew it did not belong where it was so she picked it up like a feather and moved it off stage. It was funny, but we chided her about not remembering that it was supposed to seem heavy.

One thing that she insisted that we paint was a tiny mouse hole with a mouse peeking out at the bottom of the castle walls

this was the first of many castles Puck and I were to paint

Once Upon a Mattress 2000

The little boy who is bowing with Maddie got added at his mother's insistence after she found out that Maddie had gotten a part although he had not contributed much if any work on the play.

The next year they did You're a Good Man Charlie Brown and again I got no pictures. Maddie and I did much of the technical work on that show. We painted the dog house and outlined all the major characters on foam board. Each character came out from behind their cartoon cutout. It was very cute

Monday, April 9, 2007

Alice in Wonderland 2000

here is a picture of the whole small stage at the elementary school

Alice in Wonderland 2000

This is the first Alice in Wonderland that Maddie was in. I was asked to costume the play and it was my first real foray into costuming. In college I was an actress and technical theater was very much secondary to performing. This play was the start of the technical phase of my life.. Maddie got the job of the caterpillar and I made her a shiny multi-legged costume. She had to become a butterfly at the end which presented a problem. I put a zipper in the costume and she wore a leotard to which I attached gossamer wings.

I strung the legs together so that when she moved her arms all the legs would move. It was pretty cool. I designed all the costumes and gave sheets to the parents so they could find costumes for the kids.

It also was the first time I worked on makeup for kids. I bought a book on makeup to refresh my memory. They were used to just putting lipstick, blue eyeshadow and thick pencil crows feet. I remember thinking that the crows feet were horribly heavy, but to my astonishment once the kids got on stage the lights that they were using totally obliterated the garish makeup. I learned a valuable lesson about a trial run of makeup. They were using scoop lights placed on the floor and the glare was very strong. I had a great deal of fun with Tweedledum and Tweedledee and the flowers were also fun.

It took a while to figure out how to do the cards since all the chorus which was made up of about 40 kids were cards. We ended up using poster board and drawing the suits on them. I gave each kid a suit and number to be so we didn't have any repeats.

All in all it came out quite well.

The last thing I did was make name plates for the walls. I used the Disney Cheshire Cat since that was the musical we were doing and then used word art to insert the name of each child. You can see them in the background. Each child got a memento of the play that way and I learned a great deal about word art.