So many iconic songs in Mary Poppins, it’s hard to choose just one for a blog title. Plenty of singing. Plenty of props. Plenty of spotlights. Practically Perfect as we opened last Thursday night in beautiful Lewiston.
Following the celebratory opening night reception, this weekend was hit the ground running for Deathtrap. Flea Markets, thrift stores and painted models, oh my.
Step in time.
I’m currently in process for Mary Poppins, as props coordinator/designer, and for Deathtrap, as scenic designer. In the research phase for both productions, I’m reading and scouring. I’m reading a book about research. And I’m reading for the joy of reading. Semester obligations complete, it’s a summer ahead of books and more books. With a few antique shops along the way.
Faux prop whiskey, round 2.
The first batch of faux whiskey was looking rather green under the stage lights, so I’ve mixed up a new recipe using burnt sugar as the base. The actor drinking the concoction on stage is open to trying the sweet water, so I got to cooking.
I used Eric Hart and Sara Today blogs as reference to come up with the following:
Create a “base”: Heat 1 cup sugar over medium heat until it caramelizes. Stirring always. Slowly add 4 cups warm/hot water. It will sizzle, a lot, be careful. Keep stirring. Eventually the sugar and water will combine together into a dark caramel brown liquid. Let cool.
To make the “whiskey”: Mix 1 cup of “base” with 4 cups of water. Done.
Your whiskey on stage will be less green and your actor will not choke on powdery ice tea.
Whiskey on stage: No tea. No coffee. No powdered ice tea. No flat soda. No caramel-burnt sugar base. And no burnt toast (what?). This was the challenge: water and food coloring. Not a bad outcome I think.
As the end of July draws near, so to does my own little version of summer stock. Sound of Music has opened and closed. The props have been safely bubble wrapped and loaded into shipping containers for their journey to Jordon. New Phoenix design has been approved, set construction underway next month. And I just finished up this little guy, Clyboure Park, for Road Less Travelled in October.
It’s been a busy two months of long to-do lists, happily completed and successful. August sunshine across the country.
The hills [of Lewiston] are alive, with The Sound of Music. .
Summer [stock] is in full swing up here along the Niagara gorge and we are full swing into Sixteen, Going on Seventeen hours of tech. Halfway thru and all I can simply remember are A Few of my Favorite [spot cues] Things. We’re going to Climb Every Mountain to opening night on Thursday.
A vintage 1930’s suspended transducer microphone, in working order, would cost the equivalent to the entire props budget for this show. Salvaged [less-vintage] microphone pieces, wire, springs, some foil tape and a bathroom towel ring can be crafted to give the same look, and cost a fraction of an actual vintage model. Taking into account the forgiving grace of at least twenty feet from the audience, and I believe the Von Trapp Family Singers won’t know the difference. Edelweiss.