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 Post subject: end of year recital
PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2006 11:02 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 11:01 pm
Posts: 283
Location: Australia
hi there.
does anyone have a list of things to do when organising an end of year recital? example: checklist?
also I would love to hear from anyone: what personnel does one use when organising an end of year recital? example: stage manager, wardrobe mistress etc.
just trying to organize an end of year show!! gulp. always been either a performer or a helper but never an actual organiser and you've guessed it: it is my very first show performance of my brand new studio this year! as always, thank you all in advance for your time and efforts and wonderful answers. appreciated. :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2006 12:17 pm 

Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2005 9:29 am
Posts: 17
Location: USA
For younger dancers, I see most people used as "child watchers," rather than "wardrobe mistress." The child watchers are usually parent volunteers and help you ensure that things are run safely and smoothly during the wait. They make sure costumes are right, shuttle the classes to and from the wings, and watch the actual performance from the wings.
Parents are usually dying for this job: they get to make sure their little star is happy backstage.
From there, I'd list
general backstage go-fer: preferably a studio employee
stage manager
lighting expert
sound expert
ticket sales
refreshment sales (?)
flower/souvenir sales (?)

If you have a budget for this personnel, I'd spend it first on the lighting designer (Right, Mr. Salzberg?) and last on the ushers: show up half an hour before curtain, take tickets, hand out programs, enjoy the show.

Hope this helps!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 3:35 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2002 11:01 pm
Posts: 682
Location: Petaluma, California
Post sign-up sheets for the parents. Specify jobs: ticket sales, backstage help, costume help, lobby decorations, program, refreshments, etc. This way, parents can volunteer in their area of expertise and comfort level. This will also give you an idea of how much willing help is there for you. Usually, we have lots of parents who sign up. Ask around for those all important willing DADS who will help lay marley (if you use it), hang backdrops, set up heavy equipment, etc. :D

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:22 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 3602
Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Hi Spangles,

It will also depend on how much "help" the theatre provides. I have used theatre in the UK that will include a technician who may be willing to operate either sound or lighting and also provide FOH assistance so that all you have to supply is people to sell programmes. Even the refreshments side will be taken care of at most theatres.

Dressing room help can be a little trickier. Whilst you need enough help to make sure that all children are properly supervised you can sometimes have too much help which can make dressing areas very crowded. Also some parents who help backstage will think that they only need to help their own child and not others which can be tricky.

What I have learnt is that when asking for help you need to send a letter out that states how grateful you are for offers of help but that also states what the help will involve and set down ground rules i.e no siblings who are not in the show to be brought along, you will be expected to help other children etc.

Also in the UK there is a toughening up on child safety. Some theatres will require even parent helpers to be registered with the local council as chaperones as they will have contact with other children not just their own in potentially vulnerable situations i.e children changing. This involves the parents having a police check done. Some areas though just require a proper list of who is backstage. When I have had to get parents licenced as chaperones some have been fine but some parents have taken offence even though it is the best interests of the children taking part.

Whatever the officialdom it is a good idea to have all helpers wear some sort of identification badge so that it can be clearly identified who should be backstage. Also you will need someone tough on the door who just lets in the people who have been agreed as helpers. It is mazing the amount of parents who haven't offered help who just come in to settle their child and then you can't get rid of them. This can really be a problem if there are limited numbers allowed backstage.

Also make it clear that not all parents will be allowed side of stage maybe one or two depending on size of the group and age of children. Wing areas are notoriously cramped and a load of parents traipsing up can disrupt the show and be dangerous to performers. The younger children I have found are also most likely to get on stage on perform when mum is not in the wings and only have their teacher to focus on.

Sorry if this all sounds alarming but I have put on 3 large scale shows in my 9 years running a school involving over 200 pupils so the above is all from experience.

Good luck.

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