Wednesday, June 1, 2011

"Release the Umbergoat!!!"

It is hard to believe that we have arrived.....we are here....the first official opening night of the 2011 Blue Ridge Summer Theatre Festival. We have rehearsed, tech has been set, tickets are continuing to sell (did you get yours yet?), we know what we are supposed to do and where we are supposed to go. Now we have the pleasure of opening our doors to the public, welcoming them in, and getting to share this hilarious and fun journey of Rosa and the zany inhabitants of Bad Bad Island.

From day one the cast has gelled and gotten along so well. When we sat down for the first read through we knew right away that this production was going to be a lot of fun, and one that we would not soon forget. As you saw in Melissa's post from yesterday children are pretty special and providing a way for them to imagine and play through the theatre is a pretty incredible responsibility. Although I daresay these kind of shows also give adults a chance to let go and play a bit as well. It's good all around!

The box office staff have done an incredible job of transforming the lobby into a magical jungle atmosphere and they will soon be in place to welcome and greet all of the patrons attending the show tonight and through the run this weekend. There are a lot of things for everyone to do including face painting, joining the endstation mailing list, checking out pics of past shows, getting tickets for the rest of the season, perhaps meeting a character or thing is for sure no one will be bored while waiting for the show to start!

So the final dress rehearsal was last night, and in just a short while all the actors will be making their way to the dressing rooms to prep for this evening's performance. Costumes, makeup, wigs and accessories will be put on and adjusted to make sure everything is just right. Before you know it the stage manager will be gathering the troops and leading them over to the performance area to warm up and wait with anticipation. Backstage is always an interesting place, and each individual actor has their own way of "warming up" and getting ready for a performance. Sometimes you will hear them making all sorts of strange noises to get their vocal cords warm. Stretching is also a very important component, especially with a high energy, high movement show such as this one. Sometimes actors will get together and warm up together, start feeding off on one another's energy and getting pumped for what is to come.

After a while everyone will need to settle down as we will hear the first of the audience making their way down to their seats. It's always fun to listen to conversations of folks entering, especially the little voices that I am sure are to be heard. Are they be excited? Will they think we are funny? Will they play with us? Do we have all of our props? What's my first line??!!! These are some of the questions that can run through our minds as we wait with anticipation and excitement. Soon the adrenaline starts pumping, and you shake off all the thoughts of anxiety and use that energy to propel you forward onto the stage and just go with it!

I really hope that you will be able to join us for a performance or two of this production and all of the productions that are part of this year's festival. Each one is unique and special in it's own way and we love to share them with you. Here is to a wonderful opening, and here is to a wonderful season!!!

Until next time~
(Company Manager)

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