Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Sometimes the Wheels Fall Off

Or you fall off the wheels.

Or there ARE no wheels.


Public Domain image of a theatrical set builder on a bad day.

It's been unspeakably busy here at Scenic Central lately.

Two shows opened almost simultaneously - All My Sons at WaterTower Theatre and The Secret Affairs of Mildred Wild at Contemporary Theatre of Dallas.  While, a close third, I & You at Circle Theatre is sloooowly finishing...  the slowness mostly because the carpenters and painters had to fit its build in with the Fort Worth Opera's schedule.

Juggling schedules, that's what it's all about for designers and builders... and for actors and directors and producers too.  Or sometimes just juggling.  On a high-wire.  On a bike, feels like.

Usually my sets get finished in good time before Opening - are mostly finished, except for details, for Tech.

This time?

This time I actually - no kidding - had exactly half an hour at home to wash the mud off before dressing and returning for the opening of All My Sons.  (Mud because I'd been scattering dirt and pea gravel on the "backyard" set, then stomping it into paths right up till the last moment.)

Because a few wheels fell off a few bikes this time...

The biggest whoopsy! bike-crash was when one poor TD drilled into his hand and had to have surgery.  That delayed things.  Some over-optimistic scheduling.  Some needing to redo or tweak hard stuff that didn't come out perfectly first time.  Some replacing of fake grass (more on that later).  Some hanging posters on some concrete walls.  Some small floods.   Most recently a desperate hunt for some replacement rolling desk chair wheels that fit weird Swedish-metric sockets.  Every rolling chair in sight had its casters ripped of to try their fit!  (It's like a desk accessory version of the glass shoe fitting thing in Cinderella.  But so far it's all Ugly Sisters; the builder is stopping by Casters R Us and International House of Casters tomorrow.)  So some delays and difficulties.  Some... well, lots of somethings actually.

But the MAIN thing, the IMPORTANT thing, is that everything did/will eventually, mostly get done and the sets are/will looking good on time.

Blood (literal), sweat, and tears, Baby!

Now I can put the casters back on my drafting chair before I fall off it again.

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