Shows

Who wants to be an American Idiot

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Shaun was down again this weekend for going to see both American Idiot: The Musical today and Ice Age Live which is tomorrow.

American Idiot was in the Welsh Millenium Centre. The start of the show set the scene for what was to follow lighting wise. The lighting for the majority of the songs was more or less the same. So much strobe throughout the whole show which was very unnecessary. Sound wise the show started with hardly any bass and too much high frequencies. It improved a bit further in with some more bass but was still overly top heavy.

There were two bits that were really good in the performance: the video; and the flying.

The video used in the performance was excellent. Lots of screens mounted on the wall each with separate feeds. With at least 2 (or 3) projectors mapped onto the walls of the set with no obvious seams. The best bit of the performance.

The human flying which was so smooth must have been automated, which is the best piece of human choreographed flying my boyfriend has ever seen.

It was an ok show but I wouldn’t see it again. The video used in it was the best use of video in a show that I have seen.

GHOST floats away

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Last weekend Shaun and myself went down to London to see the last show of GHOST the musical in the Piccadilly Theatre on the west end.

We were sat in the centre of the stalls. The show went amazingly and even the actors started crying on stage in some parts, making it even more realistic. Okay the storyline isn’t the best but the technical aspects of it are absolutely amazing. It is such a shame that it is being replaced by a jukebox musical – Viva Forever. GHOST had some great actors and actresses playing their roles very well.

There was a very nice speech by the director at the end of the evening and Shaun got the program signed by most of the main actors – apart from one who didn’t really do the role justice as the original actor playing him.

I loved the video aspects of it with the moving LED walls and front projection with all the illusions too. The way video was integrated into the show was superb and was the part of the performance that I was impressed by the most. It was an amazing atmosphere, being the last show, with most of the audience knowing that it was the final performance. IT was great to be part of the last performance of a great show.

End of the Fringe

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The Edinburgh Fringe 2012 has come to an end. So sad to see it go. It has been such an incredible month working with some of the most amazing people.

We had an extraordinary bunch of people working in the Pleasance Dome with excellent shows.

We started our get out for 10 Dome as soon as The Three Englishmen finished their last show at 18:40. Well after a few photos and a ceremonious turning off of the 10 Dome gobo by fading it out slowly.

10 Dome was out by 23:00 and all that remained of us was a small paint mark left on the wall and some slightly grubbier white walls; at 11pm, 10 Dome was no more all that was left was a Dressing room and an empty room.

We spent the rest of the evening into the early morning assisting Queen Dome until we were broken at 03:00 to get some sleep before needing to be back at 09:00 to carry on with all the get outs. By the end of the day we had all the venues out and almost everything that needed to go to the Courtyard was back there; all the bits that get stored on the container were in the now empty Queen Dome or the Quad ready to be taken out to the container on the final day. The excellent team of Jason and Tess packed the container and we continued to pack the container for the rest of the day bringing steel deck seating, flats, scaff, insulation, blacks, and tools until they finally closed it up with everything neatly packed in and locked it up at which point the heavens opened and rained very heavily for the next half an hour to an hour. The most rain that festival, with hardly any rain over the majority until that downpour and a few lighter ones during the packing.

Going to the Courtyard to collect our pay was very satisfying but also very sad as it meant that it was all over. The next day I would be on the train to my boyfriends and the Fringe would be completed. Not before, however, a staff meal and party starting in King Dome/Ace Dome for the meal and Anthony’s speech. Then heading over to Frankensteins for drinks and dancing until 3am which was great to finish on.

Got up the next day and caught the train to my boyfriends. Leaving Edinburgh, Pleasance, the Dome and everyone I met behind (bar one who was on the same train as me) all will be missed greatly.

Until hopefully next year.

One week left

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There is now just one week of shows left.

Been having an amazing time up here working on these shows, and most of the acts are wonderful to work with.

Seen quite a few amazing shows in other Pleasance venues. One of the best being Translunar Paradise. It’s such a great piece of mimed theatre with sounds and music created live on stage.

Had some great staff parties/get togethers so far and several more to go.

Was so good to have my boyfriend up here for a week and got to spend some time with him and spend lots of his birthday with him too.

The Fringe Festival at Pleasance Dome: 10 Dome

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After a great first week up here at the Festival we are now in full swing. We arrived here on the 27th and had an introduction talk then a drink at the pub in the evening.

Remembering names isn’t my strongest point and have met so many new people. Not sure on all their names still.

The two days after that were for finishing off the venues. We started by removing hundreds of chairs from below Pleasance two’s seating.

When we got to our venue we started doing all the small bits to make the venue ready for the public and the shows.

The Tech rehearsals went very well over the next couple of days and the companies were mostly happy.

We have some great acts in our venue. With shows starting from 12:20 going right through till 00:05. There are nine shows in our venue.

Starting with a musical called “US Beef” about the US meat industry (and the general corporate world).

The next show is As You Like It. It is a good production of it set around the 1960s and has a great group of actors.

We then go into an excellent play called “Peter Panic”. It is very dark and has an excellent story. The script can also be purchased after the show for a reduced price only for the festival. The play also has one of our biggest sets.

This is followed by a one woman play called “Juana in a Million” about immigrants into the UK and their experiences. It’s a very touching story.

We have a great comedy show from The Three Englishmen called “Squares” which we operate and is extremely funny and is defiantly worth a visit to come and see it. The four of them are very funny and their sketches are superb.

Tom Deacon then does a show called “Deaconator” which is all about closure that Tom needs now he is 26 and the trouble he has completing a goal which he was unable to do in 1995.

Danielle Ward follows Tom with one of two shows depending on the day of the week. One is “Speakeasy” which is a very funny standup show. The other is a storytelling show called “Playdead” with some scary stories. Both shows are very good. I prefer “Playdead” over the standup although still find the standup excellent too.

Peacock and Gamble follows Danielle’s show. Their show “Peacock and Gamble Don’t even want to be on TV anyway” it’s all about – you guessed it – how they do not want to be on the TV. It’s a really enjoyable group of sketches to watch.

Our final show is Monkey Toast which is an improvised chat show. They have a few guests on each night with a chat show. Which after they have chatted for a bit there are a cast of about 6 improvisers who then proceed to do some improv based on the chat.

The Singing Sisters

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When we went to Liverpool for Matt’s birthday we decided to go and watch Sister Act: The Musical which was touring there at the time. We arrived at the Liverpool Empire theatre with 5 minutes to spare after a nice meal out.

I saw the show at the London Palladium when it was still on the West End and was quite impressed with it; although GHOST: The Musical is much more impressive.

In the west end the announcements for no photography and to turn off mobiles etc was done by Whoopi Goldberg. I was rather disappointed that this was not the case for the tour, although some of the jokes in this such as using a phone at the theatre is a sin were still included.

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Cracking a few Nuts at the Bristol Hippodrome

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Matthew Bourne has created a completely different take on a classic ballet piece with his individual slant. His Nutcracker, a dance of two acts, is set in a orphanage with the main protagonist a little orphaned girl named Clara. The start is a facade with a Christmas party that it just for show for some visitors. As soon as they leave all the toys and decorations are taken away. They go off to bed, and then enter a dream world. The doll that Clara received becomes human and takes them there to two dream worlds, the frozen lake and sweetie land.

This production was very well staged apart from a couple of moments when aspects of the show were able to be seen which should not have been. A couple of cloths were taken out too far and this was seen when they were taken out live with a piece of scenery and the bottom of the cloth was a good few inches from the bottom of the scenery piece.

To be finished…

The Beastly Hall for Cornwall with a Beauty

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Last week my boyfriend and I also paid a visit to the Hall for Cornwall for a production of the Beauty and the Beast by TAODS. Their performance of it was very good with superb set. A few flying errors especially as the one we saw was the last one of the run. Most of the cloths were bounced and one came in too far allowing the audience to see the bar and the ties, even from row M where we were sat, which then had to be taken out slightly.

A couple of lighting effects were not very well thought of and looked, for a lack of a better word, a bit naff. A way I can tell that the show was good is with what my boyfriend says about it. He said this one was ok, which by most peoples standards is good. Especially for an amateur performance, as he has seen the professional production I expected no less. If his comment was “It was interesting” then he didn’t really enjoy it.

The cast performed this show very well and all the songs were sung very well. I really enjoyed the performance and had a good time with my boyfriend watching it. Another show well done for TAODS.

A Titanic Experience

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Last week on Friday 6th April my boyfriend and I took a trip down to the Minack Theatre. We went there to watch a production of Titanic the Musical by the Atlantic Theatre Company. Knowing some of the cast I was able to get company seats to watch the performance. The show was absolutely great. As I am writing this they are preparing for their last performance commencing at 22:20 so that key moments of the performance occur when they happened 100 years ago.

This is only the second show I have seen at the Minack with the last one I saw I was actually operating lighting for it. I was very impressed with the show. The cast were fantastic a few wrong choices for some of the songs. I could not fault the performance other than that. The cast were great, as was the lighting and sound.

We couldn’t have asked for better weather when we went to see it with sunshine to start till it went down behind the theatre and then had a moderate temperature for the most part only getting slightly chillier for the last half an hour.

Wednesday of Shows

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Last Wednesday was a day full of shows. We left Treforest at 7 and headed to London.

The main reason we had gone was for the ARC Show, an architectural lighting show. There was a few bits that interested me but it did not take us long to go around the show and look at the bits that interested us. So we decided to catch a matinee of a show as we were in London. It had to be done. Some of the group went to watch Wicked, whilst me and two others went to watch Les Miserables. Although I wanted to see Wicked I knew my boyfriend wanted to take me so I wanted my first time seeing that show with him as it was his favourite musical.

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