Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A Day in the Life of an Off-Off Broadway Stage Manager

Before I go into this post, I have to preface with the fact that I really dislike the terms Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway. These labels and terms not only categorize and demean most theatre, it actually puts people off and encourages a way of thinking that's very limiting.

This morning I woke up to discover that all of my actors and crew have sent me their bios for the program (almost on time too!). It's really lovely when you get people to do something on (or as close to on) time because it gives you an awesome sense of power. You say, "Can you please get this to me by Sunday?" And when they do it, it's amazing!

Compiled all the bios in one Word document and sent to House Manager. He shoots me back an e-mail asking me if we'd like credits and a thank you section. Have to consult with the director about this. Having only been on board with this show for 6 days, it's been kind of whirlwind wham-wham-here-we-go! Luckily, I'm the kind of person who performs really well under a lot of pressure, especially when thrown in the middle of something. Throw me into a production the week of tech, I'm like, SURE! OKAY! LET'S DO IT! (no joke)

After having done all that, I get an e-mail from the producer of the other show I'm SMg, asking me to gather all the bios for the program for the show that's not until late October. I'm thinking to myself, "That's way early but better way too early than way too late." Get an e-mail from one of the actors asking about the schedule which we don't have assembled yet. Have to get in contact with director about it ASAP.

Today start tech on the other show. A friend of mine has graciously accepted the role of Assistant Stage Manager and I must train her while training myself in the process. Must organize all props and costumes, finish tracking props (hopefully we'll have them all!) and make sure tech goes as smooth as possible.

I needed an ASM because not only am I SMg two shows simultaneously but I'm an extra in a big-budget Hollywood film shooting in upstate NY and I am called in to shoots during performances. Actually, my first day of shooting starts tomorrow and we're still teching then. Haven't told director (having just discovered early today) but hopefully he won't stress out too much about it when I assure him that my ASM is not only the most amazing person in the world but able to fill in for me as well.

It's kind of stressful but it's very rewarding. Beats folding shirts, stocking shelves and making coffee.

No comments: