State of the Season – Oct 1

By Tyler York

It’s October 1st and work on the productions in our 2010-2011 Season is humming along nicely. We are three weeks away from the opening of LIGHT UP THE SKY in the Paramount Theatre (hooray!), which means we have less than three weeks to finish our work. From all accounts things are going well and there are some exciting things in the works for this weekend that would bring even more of the late-40’s magic of Boston to life onstage.

Sitting in on the series of production meetings this morning, I was struck by the fact that we have four shows in various states of production and another four in pre-production. The conversations taking place in each of the three meetings today demonstrated this fact:

In the LIGHT UP THE SKY meeting, all were in a light, jovial mood as finishing touches and technical load-in schedules were discussed. In fact, I couldn’t help but note the collegial spirit of the group and make a mental comparison to the relationship shared between the characters in the show.

THE ACTOR and THE ACTOR’S NIGHTMARE centered around conversations about specific elements of the production, the width of a balustrade for example. Fabric was also a recurring topic of conversation. Scenic and Props are looking at fabric today for furniture upholstery and Costumes will be sharing fabric swatches with Lighting soon for testing to ensure the color of a costume isn’t affected by lighting and vice versa. All part of the collaboration required to put on a well-designed show!

BUD, NOT BUDDY, our TYA production, is in the early stages of production. Rehearsals just began this past Monday and the cast and director, Robert Colby, are having fun exploring how the set and costumes can help character development. Naturally, those explorations bring about a lot of questions! By bringing those questions to the production meeting, designers and production staff can help define the realm of possibilities.

It’s all very exciting. The fourth production this semester, NINE, was recently cast and will soon join the roster of production meetings… and so the cycle continues.


Tyler York is the Assistant to the General Manager of Emerson Stage and an alum of Emerson’s BFA Stage/Production Management program.

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