I know! It's been ages. Nearly a decade, it feels. I hope you don't feel that I abandoned you! Don't worry- all of you right there, in what tiny shred of a heart I have left!
For those of you who don't know, or for the rest of you who've drained a box of wine or three since I last posted, I'm a stage manager. And I've been stage managing one of the toughest plays I've ever worked on... The past week of technical rehearsals, dress rehearsals, a preview and an opening night have left me nearly dead. I'm surprised to be alive and breathing!
For most of the past four weeks, this has been my view:
My Vanilla Coke. Pencils. My 'good' pen. Little Post-Its. Post-It tabs. Candy. And: my script, which slowly became filled with light cues, sound cues, projection cues, AND A SNOWSTORM.
To make a long story short and protect my reputation: the show opened last night, and I'm still alive.
(( An hour long break occurred right here, as I drove my truck to a furniture store to pick up furniture for a DIFFERENT show in town, and drove it to its theatre. Work doesn't stop for long, for me, it seems. ))
So what am I here, this afternoon, to share? What I made for opening night gifts!
Making a gift of some kind is one of my favorite parts of the job- and it isn't even one of the required parts of the job. It calms my nerves to arrive early on the first night. I walk slowly, unlock the theatre, turn on all the lights, sweep the stage floor (nearly a ritual in itself!) Then, the most calming part of my pre-opening ritual: I place my gifts in the dressing rooms at the nearly cliché makeup tables surrounded by lights. It's so exciting! I love the idea of the actors showing up and finding their gift in their dressing room. And I don't just make a gift for the actors- I leave one at everyone's 'position.'
SO WHAT DID I MAKE?
I made necklaces!
I bought lengths of chain at Micheals- it was on sale for 2.50 per package! I already had the rest of the stuff at home- necklace clasps, jump rings- and the most important part, Tim Holtz's Philosophy Tags. I love these things! They are beautiful.
As I didn't have ANY free time, I used my lunch hour to assemble the necklaces. Late one night after rehearsal, I made the 'packaging.'
For the packaging, I used an office-supply 'Custom Stamp Kit' to make my own stamp- with the title of the play, the year, and that famous theatrical pre-show greeting: "Break A Leg!" I stamped this on two tags. The first, a kraft tag (from Ranger) which I embossed with a Sizzix/Tim Holtz Sewing & Stitching embossing folder. I stamped one of Mr. Holtz's trucks on it, wrapped the necklace around it- and put it in a regular brown paper bag. I folded over the top and punched two holes with my Crop-A-Dile. I took the other stamped tag, just a plain manila shipping tag (bought in bulk at Staples- very cheap!), wrote a note on it and tied it to the paper bag with some Dollar Tree twine.
Here's the pictures!
There's the bag!
And here's the gift inside:
Isn't that nice looking? I was impressed with myself. For not much money at all, I had a gift for every person involved with the production. It took only about an hour to produce eight of these. Yes, only eight, it's a fairly small (but technically difficult) show.
Here's a close-up, cuz I like lookin at it!
Well, it's suddenly 4:30. I've got less than two hours before I need to run downtown for tonight's show. I'm so so relieved that the week of technical rehearsal is OVER. There's a reason show people call the week of technical rehearsals "Hell Week." After tomorrow's matinee, I'll have a few nights off and some major relaxing and crafting! And on top of that, I'll be back soon (!) with some exciting news and a new card!
See ya then!