Block 327: January 28, 2014




Date: January 28, 2014

Crane: 327

Days Spent on Project: 346

Location: Apartment, Washington Heights, NYC

Person I would have sent it to: Camille A.

Camille was the last of the four costume designers in the third year, when I started school at the Yale School of Drama. She was from France. She’s now in New York, still designing costumes around… I actually saw her in the garment district on 7th Avenue last Thursday. It was the first time I’ve seen her in maybe… six years?

Years after that first year in school and after my first year in New York City, Camille hired me to be her assistant for a new Opera that was being co-produced at two different theaters- once in Nashville, and then a few months later in New Jersey. It was huge! Two different casts and, of course, the same “designs” and costumes were supposed to fit all the different people with little or NO alterations as they didn’t have the time or money to make magic happen.

It was one of my first experiences of having to fit what seemed like hundreds of people at the same time. I think one production, the New Jersey one, numbered 50-70 student and adult chorus members. We might have had 15 minutes to dress TWO undergraduate students at once in clothes they’d never seen before, with a wardrobe crew that consisted of one person to help me pin, and then one other person to alter EVERYTHING.

I think back on that experience with mixed emotions- Theater PTSD- but I also met a good friend out of it- Mikey G. He kept me laughing as we pinned old rental costumes on 18 year olds who had no idea what their natural waists were or what a petticoat was. Sigh.

Always make sure you have a crew. Always make sure the theater gives you enough time to do the work. Always make sure the theater gets you to their theater; one night I was abandoned by a roadside, told that a bus “might show up” in the next hour. This was in January. In the middle of NOWHERE.

Yeah, and always make sure that you keep hard copies of everything, and CC yourself on all your emails and never assume someone will remember to pay you on time. That was another first.

Music I listened to while sewing: I’ve got “The Drowned Man” Playlist on in the background.

I stumbled across an online Tumblr conversation yesterday about Punchdrunk, and their most recent shows (Sleep No More and The Drowned Man). Someone was asking if PD had created a new genre of theatre, and if it was the beginning of a new trend. Many people were weighing in… I kept wanting to interrupt and throw my resume at every single person involved in the discussion.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: I don’t think people understand how suffocating it can feel at times to work from home.

I’m remembering why it’s necessary to pack up everything and fight for a table at a Starbucks; something about being surrounded by noise and people is a little more focusing rather than distracting.

I think I have a lot of reading to do today. I can do that productively in public, right?

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