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Directors!!!

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by TechDirector, Mar 19, 2003.

  1. TechDirector

    TechDirector Active Member

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    So today I was walking up to my tech booth and I saw the director messing around with the sound board. "Hey what are you doing?" I said. "Oh I need to EQ the system" he said. "But I already EQ'ed it and it doesn't need to be touched" I said. And when I looked at the sound board, the entire thing was screwed up!!! It took me 2 hours to EQ the board and he messed it all up!!! So I had to do it ALL OVER AGAIN!!! The advice? WHEN YOU FIRST MEET YOUR DIRECTOR, LAY DOWN SOME GROUND RULES!!! ESPECIALLY IF HE KNOWS NOTHING ABOUT ANYTHING!!!
     
  2. tm1000

    tm1000 Member

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    LOL! I had this happen when I was in tenth grade, our Choir Teacher wanted to show a movie (in the theatre with the 700 dollar porjector) and since he didn't know how to turn it on, he just played with everything, the eq, our wireless mic system, the mixer. Too bad he got majorly yelled at by The District Office, the TD, and our Stagecraft teacher, he's never touched the system again (thank the Lord)
     
  3. delnor

    delnor Active Member

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    Is this director a student or staff member? If a student yeah I would say somthing directly to him or tell a staff member about it. People need to know thier place. You are sound so thats what you do, directors direct. If he wants to "direct" you to do somthing with sound, then thats fine. Otherwise he shouldnt touch it.
     
  4. TheMockery

    TheMockery Member

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    The saying "Do what the director tells you to do, then do it the right way" might apply to this situation as well. But, of course, be respectful when addressing control issues. I definitely agree with delnor though, everyone needs to know their place and the limits of their abilities..
     
  5. TechDirector

    TechDirector Active Member

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    lol......nah i'll just act snooty to him for as long as i go to the high school. lol j/p. I have addressed the issues and i think he's finally getting the idea that i don't want him touching my sound board. lol.
     
  6. thorin81

    thorin81 Active Member

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    OK! There is definitely a chain of command that exists when it comes to something like this. I am under the opinion that when the show goes into tech rehearsal that the director's job is over. He has no bussiness changing anything else. PERIOD! I also think that everyone has a job in the theatre for a reason and you do your job and no one elses. There needs to exist a definite respect for the abilities of each of the departments and you follow the proper chain again to change anything. Never do it yourself (unless you are in an educational theatre setting, then the director/instructor has every right and responsibilty to make sure that the show gets the best that it can.). Let me know if you have a different opinion. I would Love to hear it!!


    Good Luck!!

    Thorin81
     
  7. The_Terg

    The_Terg Active Member

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    I's say that I go through that problem weekly, only on a lesser scale. My settings are constantly lost by multiple people. Firstly, the AV coordinator of the school (Who sets up for assemblies) has a tendency to adjust one channel. this is not a problem, I can just copy the settings over.

    However, the board settings are getting lost more and more often by someone else. I suspect it to be a younger techie, ignoring my signs and remarks. Ill usually come to school the next day to find all my EQ's neutralled and trim's neutralled.... (arg....) Thankfully I have a pretty darn good memory for that kinda stuff.
     
  8. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

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    I would agree in principal but seperate out the job of the light board operator and that of the designer. A designer designs the show to his specifications. The light board operator is like the stage manager in that once the curtain opens the board operator is trusted in following thru with the director or designers intentions and not introducing his or her own design or concepts. Slight technical adjustments apply and can be as needed modified by the running crew - stage manager acting as director and designer and board operator acting as the operator tech person in fulfilling the designer's intent. No matter how bad your opinion of the design, it's still the designer or in this case faculty manager's design that is being produced not the tech person's own interpitation of it. Should it become necessary to correct technical problems after the designer's work is done, the stage manager is respoinsible for representation of the outcome given imput from the tech person on site that sound board operator.

    That's at least a strict description of the difference between what is designed and what is implemented. The designer might not know better but short of your help in the design it should not be changed if at all possible if you respect the chain of command and what is being done - no matter how badly. Realistically, the board operator has lots of responsibility on his or her hands. Artisitic design things are constantantly under scruteny technically. It's just a question of realizing the designer's intent in a technical way given it could not be done in the prescence of the designer for it. If the board op is the designer there is no problem. If he or she is not than it should be approved by the stage manager in my opinion.

    It also covers your ass.
     
  9. avkid

    avkid Not a New User Fight Leukemia

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    our director does not touch our equipment ,he just yells at us to clean the booth!!
     
  10. avkid

    avkid Not a New User Fight Leukemia

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    i make signs that say: show in progress do not touch under penalty of death!!
     
  11. ccfan213

    ccfan213 Active Member

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    its easier to lock the booth to keep out unauthorized people and make all the staff aware that u are willing to do tech work for anything, including chorus and band concerts. even though those things are often boring to work on, it will keep people from messing with your boards and the staff are always happy for the help. you would be surprised at how much having people like u and owe you a favor can help :twisted:
     
  12. zac850

    zac850 Well-Known Member

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    my director came up to the booth once during the show, because she was on the VOG mic as a baby crying. That one the only reason she came up. She knows that if she wants something, I will change my design for what she wants. She will tell me what she wants, and I will cary it out. Its a very nice relationship we have.

    The head of the arts department--sort of the closest thing my school has to a teacher T/D-- is a sound techie. He knows how to do sound, mix sound, wire sound, and all that stuff. He was touching our light board once, and that was when I was reading off what buttons for him to push as I focused the lights as I wanted them. Next year I will teach him the light board, but he knows not to mess with it, and that I'll deal with it.


    Regardless, I don't think its as big a deal if a fellow tech touches something as if a director or actor touches something. All light guys have a basic understanding of how to run a sound board, and all sound techies have a basic understanding of how to run a light board (Ok, now ALL, but most I should say). At the very least, they know not to mess with it if they don't know, because they wouldn't want someone to mess with their board.
     
  13. ccfan213

    ccfan213 Active Member

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    thats very true, i have even done some DJ work as a volunteer thing with the light tech helping me since i dont have an assistant and i found its much harder to dj with 1 person than operate a board during a show even if the DJ board ranges from 3-12 channels and my school board is 36 channels, but we both know not to touch anything he doesn know how to do and tell eachother of anything we do to eachother's system in their absence.
    ps your lucky your arts dept head knows what he is doing, ours is an idiot and not only screws up everything in the booth almost burning out all the lights and blowing a brand new sound system, but fired the best theatre teacher in the district, but thats another story.
     
  14. zac850

    zac850 Well-Known Member

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    Yea, my arts department head is a really nice guy, and he respects me for what I think, and allows me to be creative. Since our "theater" is a gym, it gets very hot during the spring. We have a spring concert, which is basically everyone and there parents coming out to watch the kids eather play this or that or sing or whatever they happen to be doing. I set-up 12 lights as front light and another 2 from each side as side light to read the music by. The arts department head told me to just leave all 16 S4's on for the entire show. I didn't, and had maybe 3 lights on for the majority of the show, and later explained to him my reason why (looks better and its not as hot). He was fine that I went against him, and told me that I made the right choice.

    He also takes me out to eat when I'm stuck at school before a show :D
     
  15. ccfan213

    ccfan213 Active Member

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    you're lucky, well not that your theatre is a gym, but that you can get food, i have it sprung on me all the time that spontaneoustly i have to stay after school all day for rehersal before a show or concert and im lucky if i can get into the teacher's prep room to go to a vendimg machine. :?
     
  16. zac850

    zac850 Well-Known Member

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    Oh, don't say it like that, you make it sound like I get food every time I stay after a rehearsal. Not true at all. He's taken me out to eat twice in the past year I believe, which is very nice, and I am very grateful. However, he doesn't stay at school until Midnight 2 weeks before the show to finish set construction, and all of the other little things.

    However, we have vending machines in the lobby of the gym, so I can usually get something to eat (unless the machine is jammed, that happens a lot)
     
  17. ricc0luke

    ricc0luke Active Member

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    Ok... so the latest problem I have had was not with a director... but a member of the board of directors at our community theater.

    In the middle of show week he went into the booth and took it unpon him self to make the sound louder than the night before when he was there. He did not contact anyone that was a part of the show. Then... on top of that... he did not have a clue what the hell he was doing!

    So he's how the night goes...

    I arrive...
    I do the normal stuff like flip on the breakers, I had completely walked by the note on the bullitian board. I go and open the booth through and unlocked window. I turn on the light board and bring up the lights to do a quick light check and switched on the sound rack to bring up the mic's to do a mic check at the same time. It was at that time I noticed someone had changed the setting on the board.... but I had completely missed the biggest problem so far. About the same time that this was happening I could here the light board operatior yelling for me, but I did not go and find him because I thought he was just going to tell me that he had found the keys (which he had gone off to find while I just opened the window to save time). Instead I went off to find the director to inform him that someone had been in the booth. On the way I passed the guy who had been yelling at me... he told me that I needed to check out a note on the bullitan board. Once again I put it off and continued my pursuit for the director... When I found him... the first thing he said to me was, "Didi you see the note?", At this time I had not... so I said I would but before I did I wanted to tell him that someone had been messing with the board. He just responded by saying that I needed to go and read the note. On the way to the note... I picked up my cell phone and called the TD who was not in house that night. He had not been in the booth... so i finally read the note... well... skimed it anyway...

    After I had concluded the note was B.S. and after seeing who had written it (a very bad man who hates computers and thinks he knows everything, esspecialy about sound and lights) I went back to the booth because I wanted to check EVERYTHING.... All I really gathered from the note was that he had no clue what he was doing... and that he had said something about red lights that should not be on.

    When I got back to the booth... I soon reliezed that the little red lights he was talking about included the mutes on the sound board.... but I had already knew that those were messed up...

    When I glanced over the rack I thought that at first the feedback filter was not on because its 9 red lights were not on.... nope.... it was on.... I checked to make sure that it was not set on bypass... nope....

    THAT DAMN FOOL HAD RESET THE THING IN THE MIDDLE OF SHOW WEEK!!!

    It is now 45 min before house opens... I had to reset the entire board and the feedback filter. This is great... While starting this... I called the TD again to get his help with this disaster.... plus he is very infulencial at the theatre... but he would not be able to be there until after the show because he was stuck at a rehearsal for a show he was directoring. So anyway... I had finished ajusting everything as good as it was going to get for this performance just before there were ready to open the house.

    Pardon my french... but what an ass....

    Instead of making the sound better, he made it worse...

    but o well.... because we closed that show last night.... and there will be several people at the next board meeting to protest the fact that he went into the booth without the director's permission....

    the bylaws at the theatre clearly state that during each shows 3 weeks on stage... the theatre is theirs and theirs only....
     
  18. ccfan213

    ccfan213 Active Member

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    in response to zac850,
    i guess the food isnt that big of a deal, but on a completely different subject, i had an idea for you about your lack of a theatre. on another post you said you have moveable pieces that make up your stage. it would probably be kinda cool to do an outdoor show. you could also use another stage in your district if another school has one, just an idea to think about
     
  19. great_beyond

    great_beyond Member

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    ccfan213


    We have one person that is supposed to do lights and sound for chorus and orchestra concerts. But I took his job cause I came in one day and every thing was screwed up. So now I get paid to sit and do homework while there is a band concert going on. So Boring
     
  20. zac850

    zac850 Well-Known Member

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    We acutely have a stage outside. For the last few years we have had an amphitheater type thing, with rock seats in the ground, exactly like an amphitheater would be, except it is about an 80' viewing angle. At the beginning of this year we got new stage pieces that are quicker and easier to set-up, and our old wooden pieces went outside onto the amphitheater. Once and a while we have a show out there, but it usually is played on by the 8th graders during lunch. However, we have maybe 2 shows there a year. Its a very nice spot, on a nice day...
     

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