Saturday, April 11, 2015

week 13 going on 14

The weeks are starting to feel as though they are running together!

We made it to our first deadline easily, which for the first show, is the quick change rehearsal.

We were able to get our actors changed from one costume to the next in a matter of 90 seconds at the rehearsal, and it usually gets faster as the season progresses. Yay!

Sometimes though, at QC rehearsal, it can feel like bedlam backstage- especially when you have many actors changing at the same time. I have seen traffic jams of chorus girls, who all entered a dressing room to change, only to get stuck getting out because their costumes and headdresses took up so much room.

The next deadline after quick change is rack check, and for this show I believe there were 10 or 11,  8 foot long rolling racks of costumes. The dresser sheets contain every actors track, detailing their costumes and the changes they make through the show. Two people from the running crew come in and check off every item of clothing for every actor and every costume change.
A sheet for an actor would read something like this:
white t-shirt, nude dance belt or underwear, black dress socks, formal wing collar shirt with quick change front, black wool trousers, white pique waistcoat, black wool tailcoat, white pique bow tie, gold wedding band, onyx cuff links, black patent lace up dance oxfords.
They would change into:
white singlet, underwear as in #1, navy blue argyle socks, blue and white striped dress shirt, blue wool trousers, blue wool waistcoat, blue wool SB jacket, navy and red striped tie, grey overcoat, gold wedding band as in #1, silver cuff links, watch with leather strap, oxblood lace up brogues, dark grey fedora, chamois gloves, grey woolen scarf.

So it takes two people four hours to get through the rack check. Then there is always the list of what is missing and when it will be ready and after all is accounted for, we get to watch our work onstage at the tech dress rehearsal. This is the first time the actors will run their show with all the technical elements together, so there is a lot going on.

Back to the table though. I have a new show to discuss with a designer on Tuesday and although we are in pretty good shape with the next show up, I feel very behind for the third show. That is our 18 century show, and you can see that I am cutting one of the coats in the top photo and after a long day yesterday with the tech dress, I was in this morning cutting another coat out for that show, and piling up the work in baskets on my table.
I like to feel that I am ahead, but it worries me when costumes sit there in pieces for more than a day or so.
Monday then, I think we will make a group effort to get at least one of these put together and that will give me a sense of relief.

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