Monday, 11 May 2009


This is the first big production i have acted in throughout my whole degree, therefore i am not used to the rehearsal process as an actor. Because of this i am finding rehearsals extremily hard, partly to do with the fact that we are outside and also because i find it hard to listen sometimes when there is so much else going on. I often find myself looking at a bee when i'm supposed to be listening, then i feel lost and a little confused. Generally i'm finding rehearsals good fun and i feel the structure of the rehearsals the last few times has worked much better for me than before as i feel i know what I'm doing when i get up to do it. Maybe I've just taken a long time to get back into it, but hopefully I'm doing OK. I often wonder whether what I'm doing is right and whether i can improvise at certain points when the work is being devised but i always feel like i will say something wrong and i will get told off. I think this fear shows a definite lack of confidence and this is something that i will need to build up myself as i cannot rely on others to do it... I feel i am doing better and better though as the rehearsals go on, and my best work is usually produced when i relax and have fun with the part.

Design Day

We had a weekend in which the whole company were available to us to help build props and costumes for the show. Before the company arrived we sat down and decided who would be good at which sort of job and then divided the company into costumers, painters and builders. We then wrote a list of the jobs that needed to be completed so that every time someone was finished on one job, they had another job to go straight into. we also decided at this point on break times so that the company would work hard without going off every two seconds for a drink etc. During the morning i was left in charge of the costume build while Carolina went with Skye to get bits and bobs that we needed. I found this less difficult than i had anticipated mainly due to the fact that the people that worked with me were enthusiastic about working and therefore got the jobs done quickly. I found this really encouraging and helped me to feel more confident about asking them to do jobs, at one point however i did get stressed as the room started to fill up with lots of people, and when working in a crowded environment i often get agitated and grumpy, however, i asked politely for the people who weren't needed to go and work got back on track. All in all the company worked so well that they weren't needed for the next day as all the work had been done, therefore we used Sunday as an unscheduled rehearsal which was an added bonus!

Production Meetings

I've found Production meetings truly helpful in keeping me on track. Having nearly completed the costumes for the show, i can now see how necessary these meetings were, instead of seeing them as something which is eating in to our design day. During these meetings I have always felt agitated that i had work to be getting on with and that the meeting takes so long because they are not structured enough. Discussing this problem with the team we decided to try and bring more structure to the meeting by going through the last meetings minutes and seeing if anything has been completed, etc. This worked as a method of controlling what is being discussed at any one time, as it was also a problem that separate conversations were breaking out. It became my responsibility to write up the minutes from each meeting and email them out to everyone involved in the production on an organisational level. This role comforted me because i then knew that everyone who had been given a job in the meeting had it written down for them and and everyone else so that there could be no mistaking who had taken responsibility for what. I find this method of organisation a lot easier to deal with then asking someone to do something. this may be because i have issues with confrontation, but writing down someones jobs is a lot easier and more direct in a way as if you tell someone something they are more likely to forget, but if it's written down there is no excuse!
I find it very difficult also when a job isn't done as quickly as i would expect, i think that this is because i generally worry about what i have to do until i do it and therefore get things done a bit quicker than most people. i have to learn to let people get on with things in their own time but if it is a job of great importance and timing is the key, maybe i should just do it myself...?

My Trip to Egypt

This post has been somewhat delayed due to the lack of time I've had to write about my trip! Something which struck about Egypt was the extraordinary differences between the two city's i visited. Cairo was busy and loud, (even at 4 in the morning you could hear cars beeping at each other and men shouting) in contrast to Sharm El Sheikh which was calm, sedate and completely westernised. The roads in Cairo lacked any lane divides which often resulted in a car park type situation, however the roads in Sharm were wide, spacious and clearly marked with lanes and road signs, it felt like a completely different country. It was astounding to me that two places in the same country could be so different, and although Sharm had the set up i was used to as a Westerner, it had none of the culture that Cairo had. One of my fondest memories from Cairo would have be being woken up at 4 in the morning by the Mosques calling you to prayer, as soon as your eyes opened you knew you were in Egypt! Fabulous! and the pyramids were pretty good too...

Thursday, 7 May 2009

three weeks before the show

I feel under quite a bit of pressure at the moment. I'm trying to get as many of the costumes done as i can but this becomes increasingly more difficult when the people who are meant to be wearing the costumes haven't been cast yet. I seem to be in everyday making costumes but i never feel like I'm getting anywhere and instead of having three jobs finished and 5 more to do, i seem to have finished a few bits from each which in turn leaves me feeling like I've done nothing because nothings been finished! This method of working doesn't suit me as i tend to get one job done before moving on to the next, i find it very difficult to focus on more than one thing at once and as a result the quality of my work tends to suffer. i need to change the way in which I'm working or i may end up with 10 poorly made costumes instead of the 10 well made costumes i know I'm capable of. My other work is beginning to suffer also, as although my written work is completed for my other modules, i still need to adjust certain bits of it in order to get a better grade or there would be no point in handing it in early for feedback. i seem to be setting time aside to complete this work then letting something else that needs doing creep into that time. The only solution may be to do more work in the evenings, however i am never at my best in the evenings and this may result in more poor work. I feel the best solution to this problem is to list the jobs that need to be done and timetable them into my busy schedule! wish me luck!

Thursday, 23 April 2009

SU Night

All in all, i think it should be said that the SU night was a GREAT success! Everyone who came had a great time, the entertainment was FAB and we raised a lot of money! There were sections of the night that could have been better organised but generally i think we pulled it off and we should be very proud of ourselves as pretty much everyone got stuck in on the night! it was fab to be all together, i had a really great time, special thanks you should go to Kathleen who was on the door ALL NIGHT!! also Amir who was in charge of Sheesha pipes and the Matt who pretty much guarded the back door for most of the night. well done guys. Another big thank you to all the people who provided entertainment, it was fab and everyone was commenting on the range of entertainment there was so thank you guys!!! This isn't really a blog entry but just a post to express gratitude to all who had a hand in the night, also quick thank you to Mark Griffin!! You even did a stint on the door (in between dancing) fab, thanks Mark!!!

First Costume Session

I had my first design day on Tuesday which went incredibly well. we started off with a production meeting which gave me the kick up the bum i needed in terms of sorting out details about the show with Sarah, there were many things we needed to know the answers for before we could progress with the show which meant it became my first priority to find out. The production meeting also became an opportunity to divide work out between the group instead of taking it on myself. as the whole group was there at the meeting they could volunteer for jobs that needed doing which saved me having to ask! very helpful. after the meeting i moved on to my costume commitments. I went through my designs with Tina which went well, with only one query in terms of storyline was that the name "Bedouin" brings up connotations of how the costume should look, and as we have decided to go with a very definite theme (Lord of the Rings style) it will have to be the name that's changed, this will be discussed with the writers on Thursday. With my costume designs approved, i got to work and started cutting the 13 waistcoats for the Tree Tricksters out of brown suede like material. After cutting 10 of the waistcoats out i realised i had run out of material, so Tina and I made the decision to make the 3 main Tree Tricksters (Amir, Zoe and Luisa) stand out from the others and give them different waistcoats but in the same style as everyone else. these waistcoats will be found in Tina's Cabin with the possibility of one being made from the scraps of brown material that is left. After cutting all the waistcoats out i sewed together the shoulders and pinned the backs ready for the fittings of the Tree Tricksters when they have been cast. Next Tuesday i will be having fittings most of the day after the production meeting to establish what needs to be made and what can be used from Tina's stock. I felt the day was very productive although i am further behind than everyone else which means i need to start putting in more time, maybe Thursday will become a costume day for me also next week, i will have to discuss this with Tina the next time i see her!