Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Last night's show was sharp, but not as sharp as the two preceding it, owing to a number of factors. Chageover was really rough--you see, at the festival the show before you ends and wham, bam, thank you mam you are putting your show on. There's only about 15 minutes between the end of the show before us and when I am starting my show, and while we are a lightweight show, it can still be hard...especially when things go wrong.

Which they did. The show before us is technically complex, with many set pieces and an involved lighting plot--they have gelled every light, so changing the lights over is very onerous. Becs and Steve, the two techs who run the Wildman Room do a great job but last night things just went pear-shaped--the show before us ran late, their stage manager had problems, their set refused to leave and then the lights had been repatched in an interesting way that made it hard to sort out how I was going to be lit. This is stressful when you have only 4 minutes left before your show is late and you are fucking things up for the next person.

So JM managed to get the show open with great effort...and then there were more delays, I forgot something, and we had our first wheelchair patron...whom, due to the chaos, we didn't choose a position for.

As a consequence they parked the wheelchair person stage right...IN MY PLAYING SPACE.

Let me make this clear: the wheelchair was not "near" the set...I've dealt with a lot weirder than that. The wheelchair was WITHIN the set--for the first time, I was performing a two-man show, albeit one of the roles was played by a responsive man with a handicap of some sort.

He was a very nice fellow, and it could have been far worse--Tourette's would have been really hard to deal with at that distance. Still, it skewed what was already a challenging show--all my blocking had to be rearranged, and I was constantly standing right next to the guy, and had to include him in a lot of the show, otherwise I'd be too theatrical and removed. David suggested that I should have grabbed his wheelchair and wheeled him around when making an emphatic point, and while that's a bit over the top it would in some ways have been easier than "hanging out" with him was.

Today is a Tuesday, traditionally a quiet day for the festival...I am very curious as to how many audience members we will see this evening.