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Back Stage at the Opera House


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I did like how the DSM stacked multiple cues (and, more importantly, how in the professional world people actually realise when they all GO - in smaller scale / amateur stuff I find if lots of standbys are given followed by one go, someone often forgets that they were on standby)


got a time code for that?

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I did mention tonight to my DSM that when he gives LX cues, he should end each standby with "please", and LX will respond with "standing by, thank you".


If I did that to the last DSM I worked with he'd probably have hit me with something... That said I find some do, some don't.


Using "please" and "thank you" is certainly how I was taught and pretty much everyone I've worked with coming out of the drama schools etc over the years. The Please usually follows the Standby (or Your Calls, please.... etc.) A Thank You follows the acknowledgement of a standby to let the op know you've heard them and close the deal. Most shows will have stacked Gos and I'm sure that remembering you are on standby might not be de rigeur with some teams but it's certainly not rocket science.


The question of when how to take multiple standbys is a choice: You stand each operator by and receive the acknowledgement with a Thank You per operator. Or you call a group of standbys, await individual responses from each operator in turn (usually the order you called them in) along with their duty (Flies standing by) and then put Thank Yous in the midst of it all. The most precise DSMs I know tend to favour the former because it's less cluttered.


I wasn't wild about the climb tallescope in near blackout routine, the unbolting the wall complete with ratchet handles overhead or quite a lot of the hazards looming up out of the black around seemingly poorly marked walkways and general mess backstage.


But I know that to question the H&S in theatre tends to cause arguments around here so will just echo the surprise that a standby hand flame rig didn't seem to be the first option. (Just noticed comment further up, I reckon the budget for the spare flame musta been blown on the cast of black clad thousands backstage.)


However, a worthwhile program for those interested in sitting in on cans for such a show.

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