Bugsy Malone at Redruth School
*** UPDATED: 2012-03-11 *** On reading the review on the school’s website many of the things I identified during this post were rectified and they produced an excellent show once again. To read their review go to Bugsy Malone Review. I would like to congratulate Sarah Mottart and the team involved for the great shows that the school always puts on. It was a shame not to be involved with it, or to get to see an evening performance due to university commitments.
I thought I should say before you read this that I didn’t realise how critical I was until I reread this back to myself.
This morning I saw Bugsy Malone at Redruth School: A Technology College, the first show out of the last four that I have not been involved with the lights or sound.
The new headmaster, Craig Martin, has made some great changes since I was last there and the school looks much smarter now. A new smart reception area for visitors and parents. A few other changes that weren’t major and didn’t stand out but the feel was a much nicer environment.
Got to see lots of my old teachers, which was very nice and they were happy to see me.
Onto the show it self or maybe starting with the technical aspects. The lighting and sound were ok but would have benefited from a little more thought and programming of lights in some aspect would have been good which I know was being done this afternoon, so the show would be better for the evening performances tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday. Some of the lanterns used for certain areas were not really suitable and could be utilised better if they were to be used for another area such as front light and not an area where a pair of smaller fresnels would have been more suited, which are also not in use for the show. Many of the lanterns have not moved, other than being refocused on to different areas, since I left. Partly due to what one person said
non-willingness to use the tallescope
and that there hasn’t been many shows put on. Now however the technician they have seems to be more on the ball and is not afraid to climb the tallescope and change the lighting.
The sound was pretty good but would have helped to have some monitors on stage for the performers to hear the band as it was hard for them to hear, although I am informed that this was being done by Mr Williams who was not present today, this will add greatly as the performers were constantly getting ahead especially in chorus numbers and the finale. Both of the women playing Tallulah and Blousey had good voices but they needed to be more confident in singing as radio mics only amplify the sound and you could tell that they were good singers but needed to project more. The whole chorus however needed to be louder throughout, this would have been helped by adding some more float microphones.
The show it self seemed to be lacking in pace but part of this was due to no fold back for backstage to know when cues were. There is a group of excellent students performing and it is nice to see a good show from the school. The performers need to be a bit more energetic but, for a change, they all seemed to be smiling most of the time.
There are two projection screens either side of the stage with a DVD playing with chapters of clips on the show. There is a piece of software that would be greatly beneficial for showing these films to stop things showing on the screen that distract such as playback bars the words play pause etc. I believe that it is called Screen Monkey and allows a window of clips on the laptop screen and you are able to create cue lists to go through clips with static colours between.
The Splurge Guns were absolutely fantastic and worked superbly. The year 5’s gave lots of laughs at them and all the scenes with them in were extremely enjoyable to watch.
The orchestra was fantastic and was sounding full with a great choice of musicians lead by the head of music Miss J Knight-Bennett. Didn’t notice any major slip ups during the show, the only issue was performers getting ahead as further upstage you were unable to hear the orchestra.
All of this said it is a great show and the teachers and students involved have created a great piece of work with today’s performance being the first time it was performed in front of an audience was great. I was glad I was able to come and see the first one that I hadn’t been involved with. If you are able to see it to should.
Read the school’s review at Bugsy Malone Review.