Final Opening Night

// September 1st, 2010 // Blog

Well, folks, here it is. Our last opening night. Some days it seems like this tour has been going on forever, and some days it’s inconceivable that it will end as soon as it will. We’ve got five performances left; now we just need to make the most of them. That’s right, Pilsen: we’re going to rock our faces off. I hope you’re not creeped out by faceless performers.

Our tech went wonderfully well last night. As we set up, an Old Style beer representative came into the theater with a 24-pack of cold Old Styles, five headbands, and a smile. He gave them all to us, and then told us about the best places to hang out in Pilsen. Best. Fringe sponsor. Ever. He said that Pilsen is Shangri-La, and that putting an El stop in would ruin it–”Get a bicycle!”

I’ve been to performances at the Dream Theatre before (the Agon trilogy), and was expecting our space to have a loft and overhang, but instead they took out some of the floor seats, put up some flats, and made a very intimate floor-stage reminiscent of our venue in Kansas City without the platform. We managed to move one flat back so that we could position the shadow screen to be as visible as possible, but it will definitely keep us on our toes to adjust back to a space less than half the width of the Indy Theater on the Square.

Another surprise–we’re doing this round of performances without microphones! The space is resonant enough that we don’t need them, so we have one fewer element to worry about. But we didn’t want to make it too easy on our performers, so we added some shadow puppetry to signify outside scenes.

We get to store the entire set in the basement, and had more fun than we’d expected handing set pieces down and popping back up, pretending we were rising up from “hell” (as Shakespeare’s actors called the trapdoor in the Globe). We just have to be sure to watch our step and not topple to our deaths when we’re loading in and out.

Today we’re postering the city, and at 10PM our final beginning performance (isn’t that a strange thought?) begins. If you’re in Chicago, come on by and tell your friends about the Chicago Fringe–we’d love to have some full houses!

-Laura

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