July 1, 2011


I call this: On the Road Again,theatre — Posted by KP @ 7:33 pm

This is a photo that’s been kicking around waiting to be blogged for, oh… two or three months.

On tour one of our almost-daily tasks is marking the set for safety in every new venue. Responsibility for this varies, sometimes the electricians do it themselves when they run cable. Unless you’ve got an electrician who’s a closet stage manager, or has severe OCD, usually it requires a little bit of a touch-up to ensure that even the most blind, uncoordinated unattentive actor won’t do a faceplant over some backstage obstacle in the dark. When you tech a show you have a little time for the cast to learn what not to run into, but on tour we get only a few minutes to give them a tour and then they’re on their own during the show. Usually the walk-around is done with worklights on, so they will never know what backstage looks like under show conditions until the show starts. Thus, everything that they could possibly bump into or trip over needs to be clearly marked to show up under run light. Sometimes this creates a comical situation.

This is our upstage-right corner of the Comedy of Errors deck, looking from upstage towards stage right. As you can sort of see, it’s tucked fairly close to a corner of the theatre wall, meaning the only path from upstage to stage right is directly over the corner of the deck, which is also where all the cables for lighting behind the set are running. I don’t remember who did the tape job on this, it was probably a group effort over time. This was our New York run, so we had a little more time to make it nice. I know I was not involved, except when it was done to be told, “I think you need to check the UR safety taping, and if it’s OK, then you need to take a picture and blog about it.”

I agreed it was definitely blog-worthy. And I, for one, never heard a complaint about anyone having trouble navigating that corner. So good job to everyone involved.

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