Tuesday, August 11, 2009

This is why I’m not a master electrician

Last week, my director of Sabrina Fair asked if anyone in the cast was able to help out with set construction, since our usual helpers are out of town for this show.

I offered up myself, Husband and a friend of mine from college who now builds set for a local events firm. I figured that I had done enough of this in college to be able to help on a community theatre show.

So early morning Sunday comes and we grab our doughnuts and head to the theatre. After going over the basic set idea with my friend from college (MC), we ventured down to the basement to see what the Guild had left over from other shows.

We actually were able to find lots of extra wood, some flats (walls) plus a few platforms that would work for us. That means we only needed some new 2x4s and some plywood to build the steps and other decorative walls. MC said it wouldn’t be a problem.

This is what we ended up with at the hardware store:

Not bad for $300, right?

When we got back to theatre, we had another girl from the cast to help us out with the building. MC basically went to town with his special tools and started building platforms while Husband and I installed platforms. We got a lot done for only a few hours’ work.

MC said he was going back on Monday to finish things up before they had rehearsal that night. In the afternoon, I get a FB message that the set wasn’t going so well.

So the Theatre Guild has some peculiarities – like the stage slopes backward as you go upstage plus the ceiling is very low. We didn’t take that into consideration. When MC went to install the flats atop the platforms, they didn’t fit under the pipes and other various things hanging from the ceiling over the stage.

WHOOPS! MC said we have to build the flats and every door frame from scratch rather than using all the pieces we found in the basement. More money, more time.

THIS is why the Guild never uses platforms – they just don’t fit on the stage!

Looks like I’ll be spending next weekend at the Guild with Husband’s new screw gun.

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