Friday, September 16, 2005

Current Activities

I have plenty of theatrical topics to write about, but I think I'm going to start by giving you an overview of my current activities. I'm taking three theatre classes: Stage Rigging, Scene Design, and Theatre Culture Studies. Theatre Culture Studies is simply a course covering Greek and Roman theatre in depth, and anyone can research that on their own, so I'm not really going to touch on it much here. Stage Rigging, however, is significantly more interesting: it's an introductory course in stage machinery. We're learning about the proper care and feeding of hemp rope, how theatrical counterweight systems work, how to rig a temporary fly system, and most recently, how to create various pieces of stage machinery, including revolves and magician's lifts. It's a great course, and I'm sure I'll be posting plenty of the things I learn in it to here and also to Wikipedia, if I find the material there lacking. Scene Design is ostensibly a course on designing sets, but the designer who used to teach it left over the summer, and his temporary replacement has turned it into more of a drawing class. I'll relay anything useful I learn, but so far, we've mostly covered drawing techniques. Like any good theatre techie, however, I'm doing plenty of other things besides just taking classes. So far, my lineup for this semester includes: -The lighting for Day O' Shame 2005, when student directors and actors are given 24 hours to write, direct and perform a totally original play. I finished hanging and focusing the lights for that earlier this evening. I'm planning on posting the full plot, as well as pictures of how the lighting looks in the theatre, just as soon as the show is over on Saturday (the 24 hours start Friday at 9PM). -Lights for Cast 'N' Crew's (one of the student groups here) production of Jonathan Larson's Tick, Tick...Boom!. I haven't really started designing this yet, but I just received the scene ground plans today, so I'm going to get started just as soon as I finish Day O' Shame. -Microphone balancing for the Performing Arts Department's production of Hair. I'm not totally sure that I'm doing that, but I think I am. There won't be much to post on that, unless I can rig up a DAT recorder and record the show along with my mixing. If that's the case, I'll post some sound snippets. I'll almost certainly have some pictures though, so long as I'm not too busy during tech week (hah!). -Lights for one or two of the dances in WashU Dance Theatre, which is a collection of faculty-directed dance pieces, performed by students. Charlie Chapman, our lighting designer (or, as he calls himself, instructor in "Defense Against the Dark Arts"), will be designing a basic rep plot, and then three or four student designers, including myself, will work with the faculty members to design the lights for each dance piece. -A sound design project, either for Ipi Zombi? or for Escape From Happiness. I'm currently talking to the directors about which one of those (if either) I will do. I'll post any original sound effects that I create, and I will also talk about the music selection process, and anything else I encounter. That's a look at what's coming up for me this year. As I said, any material I generate will be posted here online for you to peruse and enjoy.

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