Monday, December 21, 2009

Invisible (12/14/09)

The Andalusia Ballet has just finished with this season's edition of The Nutcracker. For the past five years I have been working on ballet performances I began playing music during the last week of rehearsals and  working backstage during the performance, but with the coming of the new sound and light boards to the control booth, I was shifted to the control booth even during performances. Although I like backstage work better, the humorous, "do your best and leave the rest:" atmosphere of the control booth is much more pleasant than the scuffling backstage intensity. Example:
Stage Manager: Wait! Marzipan is BEFORE Gingersnaps?!!
Ballet Mistress: Yes.
Lights and Sound Guy: It's been like that since the 1800's. Except for that year she [the Ballet Mistress] swapped it because of a quick-change.

My role in either position, however has really not been very different. A stage hand should not be seen or heard, in fact, it should be perfectly invisible. If a stage hand is noticed at all, either by presence or absence, then that person has failed. The epitome of perfection is to be absolutely undetectable, except, perhaps, by directors or other stagehands.

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