Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Been sick all week. Just managed to keep my voice through four performances of Pinocchio and then lost it for days. Been sleeping nearly round the clock, except for nannying. By lucky coincidence, this is my understudy's week to go on for me, so I had five days off. I can speak now, and sort of sing, and should be good to go by saturday.

I've been making a Halloween costume this week - an airplane - for a woman's 6-year-old nephew. I finished this morning just in time for her to come pick it up. It looks pretty cute, but I did have to punt a bit with the materials that were purchased for me.

My third Lindy Hop class tomorrow - followed by a class outing to go swing dancing.

Batboy the Musical for Halloween going dressed as Elizabeth Bennett.

Saturday shows.

My roommmates and I have been talking about moving - and finally squared it with our landlord today. I've got to find a new place by December 1. I'm trying to stay in the neighborhood - easier to move, and near all the places I already know.

I'm ready for a break, (one that I don't spend sick) but next month will be spent running one show, rehearsing another, and moving.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I have a very busy weekend ahead. Today I costumed a short film competition submission. At 7pm I dropped off a stack of distressed scrubs and tea-dyed lab coats. Now I'm waiting until midnight when the writing team will send me a final synopsis of the shoot tomorrow, and I'll send an email to the actors telling them what of their own to bring, and how to do prepare hair and makeup.

Tomorrow I have two performances of Pinocchio, and another two on Sunday. Sunday night is the premier of "November" - the film I costumed last march. Its being shown at a cafe on 5th along with two other shorts. I will, of course, utilize the opportunity to dress up.

Pinocchio is finally going well. The first two performances were good, but felt like a dress rehearsal. The rehearsal process involved a significant amount of cutting and re-writing. We got two new songs on our last two days, and much of the expositional dialogue was curtailed drastically. I spent a lot of my first performance trying to remember WHICH part of that line had been cut, after I'd already memorized it the old way. Our third and fourth performances suddenly clicked, and we're feeling solid. It's fun to do a physical comedy role. Each show I find something new to do with the cane, a clever way of sliding about, or a way to reinforce that our comic duo is more than just funny. We are, after all, the bad guys.

Next week I get a bit of a break. We've only got one weekday show, and it's the one my understudy is taking over. I've come down with Pinocchio's cold, so I'll be glad to have a few days to recover. It started as a sore throat, too. I'm such a baby when my throat hurts. I spent most of my day in a fuzzy bathrobe alternately napping, and checking on the progress of the costumes I'd poured a liter of bleach over. I'd kind of hoped they'd smolder a bit, but I guess it takes longer than I left them. There was a nice mottled look to the formerly-solid colored scrubs. The white lab coats got modified with tea dye and soy sauce, leaving a nice streaky finish. Then I had a hayday tearing out cuffs, ripping off some buttons, and whipping together a few holes with dark-colored thread. It was a fun day, all in all.

I'm reading Harry Potter. All the books I've been checking out meaning to read have gone by the wayside. I'm just too busy now to start anything new, and too tired to absorb a new cast of characters.

My corset-making class finished last week, though my corset still needs to have its edges finished. I also need to embroider flowers on the stems I ran up all the seams. I'm hoping to get it done to wear to Batboy on Halloween.

Two more weeks of Lindy Hop class before Elves and the Shoemaker rehearsals start. I"m hoping to pick up some more extras work to fill in my empty days. And I'm gearing up to vote, trying to be informed, but feeling woefully unable to sort through all the propaganda to get to any sense of what's real. Even something as simple as Prop 1 - a tax increase to fund our mass transit - gets murky once shunted around the commercial circuit. I'm all for more public transportation, since I use it pretty often, but then I read that the last proposition fell quite short of the intention, and is now overbudget and a decade behind. Sigh.

I'll be glad when the election is over.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I got a call this weekend from a director wanting me to costume a shot film for a competition this weekend. Today I met with him on location to discuss options. As with most of these short film things, only a general sense of characters and setting can be determined until the criteria are assigned by the organization. For this film the crew will get the topic friday night, shoot all day saturday, post on Sunday, and mail the film on Monday. I'm putting together a basic wardrobe setup for them to pull from once they officially script and cast the short. So for the next two days I'll be assembling wardrobe pieces and distressing them to fit a post-apocalyptic world. On the day, the director will pull from the pieces I've assembled to make the shooting wardrobe.

Pinocchio is going well so far. Our two audiences found wildly different things humorous. Yesterday was a bit rough, but today began to feel like a cohesive show. There were a few line flubs, but nothing major, and I got my first Q&A comment from a boy who thought "The Fox is my favorite because he's funny!" YAY!!! Then every kid had to tell THEIR favorite, so everyone got their kudos today.

Two shows tomorrow, Lindy Hop class tomorrow night, and in between attacking lab coats and scrubs with bleach, tea, and soy sauce.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Today I left my house at 5am to meet the crew of "The Comet Chronicles" for our day on location filming near the gorge.

It was a very windy day, with clouds of dust being kicked up with each step. Within minutes our dust filled hair was matted, our faces dirty, and our teeth gritty. After a day of shooting here in the rain last year, and a pickup day with a snowstorm, wind and sunshine was the better combination.

We had a lot of fun today, getting every shot we wanted even as the light faded on us. My costumes held up for the most part, except for a split seam up the leading lady's left leg, that I sewed back in on set four times (we didn't have time to take the costume back up to the base camp where my machine was set up) Eventually even the basting between takes was given up, and she was stuck together with double-stick wall mount tape for the final long shots.

The lady working hair and makeup was the extra who saved my butt by helping me sew the cape for the snow shoot on the first day of the "November" set. We may get to collaborate in the future - which would be great! She's very determined, and wants us to submit ourselves as a team for some big budget feature films coming up.

Tomorrow we're greenscreening in town. Hopefully there will be less dirt. Except on the costumes which have to maintain the dust level for continuity.

Friday, October 17, 2008


Elizabeth, to do her justice, had, in the first ardour of female alarm, set seriously to think what could be done, and had finally proposed these two branches of economy: to cut off some unnecessary charities, and to refrain from new-furnishing the drawing room; to which expedients she afterwards added the happy thought of their taking no present down to Anne. ~Jane Austen~

Let's talk financial crisis. We're all aware that there is one, and a lot of the last political debate focused on it. In a time where the costs of commodities are rising worldwide, and the masses are panicking over the stock market, what are we to do?

I think, as a whole, this time can be a good one for our nation. For far too long we have been using up far more than our share of the world's resources; convinced daily by the media that every want and desire should be instantly satisfied. We live in bigger houses and drive more cars than our ancestors, and consume so much more than our share of food that we have a national obesity problem.

This could be a very good time to re-evaluate the difference between wants and needs. A time to make smarter choices about how to spend money, how to eat, how to save, and how to sell off the excess. (I've been weeding through my possessions to find anything I can eBay to supplement my income, and found a surprising amount of extra)

But there is a danger in this time. As people tighten their belts, one of the first things that people give up is their giving. Food banks are going to be tighter this winter. Homeless shelters less funded. I haven't heard anything from Compassion, but I can imagine that many people are giving up their sponsor children because they can't keep up with the payments. One place that hasn't fallen off is KIVA - which has so many donations being made that it's almost impossible to lend. By the time the page loads, the individual is already fully funded. (One personally relevant sidenote - please continue to support the arts as well. Your actors already starve regularly. We're worried about our live theatre ticket sales)

In a time when the rest of the community is panicking, and battening down the hatches, we who believe that God knows our needs should have a response of continuing generosity. Giving, especially when one doesn't know exactly where the next bit is coming from helps to develop a basic faith that God can provide. It also gives us a chance to loosen our grip on our things and having control of them.

If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs...~Rudyard Kipling~

If we use this time to learn to let go of possessions, let go of excess, and find that we can do with less, we'll enjoy simple things and moments more than we'd expected. Use things up, wear them out, melt them down (wait, I think someone already said that)...Give as much as you are able, and even more. Be generous when every nerve is telling you to hoard. Learn to find joy in things that don't cost much. Borrow from the Library instead of buying. Eat staples instead of fast food. Walk as much as you can. (You'll lose a SURPRISING amount of weight this way, too!)
Dance socially. And give even beyond your ability!

One who cannot cast away a treasure at need is in fetters." ~J.R.R. Tolkien~

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Lots of theater happening. (Speaking of which, why have all the theaters, even the community theater I acted at growing up switched over to "theatre." I've had to change everything on my resume to look snootier.) Last night I went with three people to the preview of "The Drowsy Chaperone" and "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" at the 5th. Pinocchio runs with costumes this week, and my script and contract for Elves should be showing up soon.

My film shoots in Vantage on Saturday. It's getting really cold. Going to need the Wookie Coat. We've had our leading actress drop out of the film, so I have to go to the rehearsal tomorrow to fit the new actress into the costume.

I put in three resumes for waitressing jobs, but nothings come of them. Instead, Craigs list has furnished some sewing jobs to bring in extra cash. Hurrah! Maybe I'll be able to take dance classes after all! My corset is coming along nicely.

Friday, October 03, 2008

It's an odd thing living with a boy. Oh. Wait. My roommate's boyfriend moved into our empty room. Things are very even keel, and they're always cooking and offering me interesting healthy dishes (I mostly live on carbs, myself) to try.

But there's a plastic model of Russian Superman planting a flag on our perishables tray, next to my French cookbook and our Linen's N Things cake plate.

We have some sort of game-station thing in our living room.

There are very large shoes by the door.

There's also a lot of painting happening upstairs which is spreading down the stairs. Things look nice.

And, on an unrelated to boy but related to house projects, we've begun taping clear plastic to all the windows to save energy for the winter. It's not pretty, but we're covering them all with sheer curtains so we don't look QUITE as "under construction" as last winter.