(Re: that title, and sorry if you've heard me refer to myself that way enough already; the director introduced me thusly to the cast at the cue-to-cue: "Say hello to Irene! She is the goddess of light and sound!" And hey, look, when somebody calls you a goddess in front of a room full of people, that's not exactly something you forget or take lightly. Not me, anyway!)
Last night was my triumphant (ha ha) return to working in the booth (light/sound) at City Garage Theatre in Santa Monica. The cast and crew have been busting their butts for months, and I show up for one cue-to-cue a week ago and one week (actually, 4 days, this show opens on Friday!) of tech rehearsals, and here I am, after just one night, already complaining.
That's not true, because I'm actually not complaining.
Last night went well. At the cue-to-cue, Charles had informed me that he was keeping things simple for this show, and I (naively) took him at his word; however... things have gotten complex in the week I was gone. The audio is going to be a little tricky, and then I overheard the director and Charles say the dreaded word "projector." I've dealt with a projector before, in the old space, and let's just say it wasn't my favorite thing in the world to do. However, that particular piece of equipment was balky and possibly possessed by the devil (and yet it worked perfectly whenever Charles was around), but I was under the impression last night that the machine he's going to bring in will - maybe? possibly? - be from the 21st century. We'll see. Anyway, last night Charles ran the sound and I did the lights, and I could see that there are things I'm going to have to learn fast. There's a lot of having two audio cues happening at once, there's a live microphone, and there is some of the dreaded cross-fading. And of course the opening is super complicated.
Actually... I had a lot of fun last night. I love seeing these shows from the vantage point of the booth. There's something really, really cool about turning a guy's light on while he moves five feet. And I'll admit that there's a bit of a thrill involved what that guy is wearing a sheet... or maybe not even a sheet. (What can I say? The eye candy at City Garage is always spectacular.) It's incredibly simple to just hit "go, and of course the artistry and design was done by Charles and Frederique, but it is really satisfying. And as always, they've created such a beautiful set and tableaux. The thing just looks fantastic.
Anyway, the only sucky thing about this is being away from my family every night for a week. Yesterday was a work holiday, so I was able to be home with Patrick and my son in the daytime. I feel bad about the amount of solo parenting Patrick is going to be doing this week. I've lined up my brother to help him out on Wednesday, so that should help a little. And I'm going to try to go home between work and rehearsal (if traffic cooperates) for an hour, where I will, what? Make the little guy dinner, put away the fifty loads of laundry we did over the weekend, and maybe, maybe, eat something myself.
I heard last night that opening night was sold out and has been for 3 weeks. So exciting. So? As the week goes on I suspect that getting up at 5 or 5:30 a.m. for work is going to get harder and harder. I also suspect that Patrick's patience (which is legendary) will get shorter and shorter. I hope to someday make it up to him.
Until then, though, I'm going to keep hitting "play" and "go," hopefully at the right times. I'll see you at the theater.
Moskva, by Steven Leigh Morris opens Friday, October 18, 2013, at City Gargage Theatre, located at Bergamot Station in Santa Monica, California. For tickets and other information go to www.citygarage.org.