Spotlight March 2015

<![CDATA[Spotlight March 2015: Designing R&J, Rigging Tips, & TRP!]]> Spotlight March 2015: Designing R&J, Rigging Tips, & TRP!
News, Events, Interviews, and More!
View this email in your browser
March 2015
Wu Chen's Notes

Hello everyone,

In this issue of Spotlight, Katharine Horowitz and Andrea Gross talk about the interplay of Sound and Costumes in Romeo and Juliet at Park Square Theater in a fascinating video.

Seth Scott of Monkey Wrench Productions debuts a bimonthly gear-focused column. With the rigging workshop this weekend, he’s got a short blurb on some of the cool rigging hardware out there!

We also visit Theater in the Round, one of the oldest and most stable pillars of our community. With a niche and outlook that’s all their own, TRP is a critical part of the long-term health of the performing arts in the Twin Cities. But that’s just my opinion: read, participate and decide for yourself!

Next month, Max Gilbert, overhire at the Guthrie and Bedlam-for-Hire, gives us his thoughts on his new career as a stagehand and C. Andrew Mayer digs into his and the community’s past with a really special essay.

Stay warm, and we’ll see you all soon - perhaps at the next Tech Tools Meet-Up March 9th!


Wu Chen Khoo
Tech Tools co-founder and Operations Director

Tech Tools Calendar of Events
Fri., March 6th - Sat., March 7th - Rigging Workshop
Guthrie Theater McGuire Proscenium Stage
Guthrie Technical Director and Lead Carpenter will teach the methods and nuances of theatrical rigging. This is meant as a basic-intermediate course, with plenty of hands-on time.

Join us for our monthly meet-up! Whether you're a veteran of the industry, or just want to come and meet some folks who work in the arts, all are welcome! RSVP via Facebook 

Working with steel is quickly becoming virtually a prerequisite for employment at scene shops. Our experienced instructors will provide instruction, suggestions, and techniques.

In an engaging, hands-on, do-it-yourself workshop, we will teach you all about the ideas and concepts of automation, and give you a chance to build your own automated systems. 

Visit our Events Calendar for information!

Not seeing something you'd like TTT to offer? Let us know HERE!

Designing Romeo & Juliet

An Interview with Katharine Horowitz & Andrea Gross

Theatre is, by design, a collaborative endeavor. In reality, some departments typically work more closely together than do others. Most people automatically interrelate scenery and lights, or lights and sound. But –be honest now- costumes and sound? So when Katharine Horowitz and Andrea Gross suggested that they talk about how their work affected and drove each other’s process for Park Square’s Romeo and Juliet, I was beside myself with excitement.

As a huge part of a successful collaboration is knowing when to shut up and step aside, I’m going to do just that and let you get on with it.

A huge thank you to Park Square Theatre, especially Production Manager Megan West. Check out the Romeo and Juliet trailer here, then go see the show with this conversation in mind!

Katharine Horowitz is a fixture of the community, designing sound professionally for well over a decade.
Andrea Gross is a Nimbus company member, a familiar face around town, and a well-known and highly-regarded costume designer.

Katharine: We thought it would be cool if we got together and interviewed each other since Sound and Costumes barely work together, we’re like two ships passing in the night. But for this particular show I thought it would be great because it was Andrea’s costumes which influenced my sound Design for R&J. I really was unsure with where to begin with our director, David Mann’s, concept of the world, so I contacted her and asked what the costumes were going to look like, what the concept and the feeling was. That was able to guide me in the right direction of the music and the sound. And that is first time, I think, I’ve ever asked for help from costumes for inspiration. So, costumes for R&J?

Andrea: Costumes for this production we started conversations in April of last year, which is probably the longest lead time on a design in a very long time...


Monkey Business: Rigging Tips

Article by Seth Scott,  
Monkey Wrench Productions
When it comes to rigging common sense should be something that goes without saying. Unfortunately when most accidents or failures occur common sense was often the first thing that was been thrown from the fly rail. Theater and Rock-and-Roll are one of the few industries where we constantly manage live loads above people’s heads and because of this safety, common sense, and being overly cautious needs to be the norm. We can’t let time and budget constraints trump safety.  

In Focus:
Theatre in the Round Players

Article by 
Steve Antenucci, 
TRP Executive Director


Many arts you can pursue on your own -- you can learn and perfect your craft in photography, writing, sculpture, painting, and more. 

Not so the dramatic arts. You want to pursue theatre, you need others.

That’s what actors and designers and other artists faced here in 1952. If you weren’t a student, your only choices to create theatre were to work as a professional at the Old Log in Excelsior, or with the Edyth Bush Little Theatre and the Group Theatre, both in St. Paul.  

So seven of those theatre enthusiasts decided to create another choice, and one using a new approach -- a theatre supported by its members.

Read the full article HERE!

Wu Chen Recommends...

I like food, so my excitement when I found Ivan Orkin’s Ivan Ramen is hardly surprising. But there’s much more to this book than just recipes: it’s a journey of a boy growing up. Parts of the book remind me of the end of Bill Healey’s interview, where he said, "To be humble and to approach other people in how you work with them with humility does not mean you’re self-deprecating, it doesn’t mean you’re discounting you’re own experience, you’re own value, and you’re own qualities. That’s something that I see a lot of younger kids and even before I taught at the University, up and comers, not really appreciate. Yeah, you’ve learned a lot and you’ve done a lot and you’ve got mad, mad skills but, you know, that person over there that you just kind of look at, that may be a drunk or whatever, they’ve got stuff in them that you can learn and is going to make you even better. If you approach them in the right way then you’re going to be able to benefit from that relationship. If you approach them in any sort of a judgmental way then you’ve closed the door to that opportunity." Much of it also reminds me of the conversations I’ve had over the years with people who work in the arts. It’s not a feel-good, rah-rah oh look just work hard and it’ll all work out book; it’s a damn good read with damn fine insights into the journey of someone who just ended up creating something no one expected.

p.s. check out the foreword by Chef David Chang. Box Office Managers and Marketing Managers will probably get a huge kick out of it.

Ivan Orkin’s Ivan Ramen at the Hennepin County Library system.
Children's Theater Company Master Electrician Dave Horn goes in depth about keeping lighting gear in good shape.
All the photos used in this publication are copyrighted to Farrington Starnes and used with permission.
Follow us on Facebook and check out our website to keep up with TTT's programming and artists!
and please feel free to share this newsletter with your friends!
Read Later
Copyright © 2015 Technical Tools of the Trade, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by MailChimp
Wed, 04 Mar 2015 20:00:00 +0000