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Making it interesting

Discussion in 'Sound, Music, and Intercom' started by DCATTechie, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. DCATTechie

    DCATTechie Active Member

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    After seeing the current show I'm working on at least 10 times, I'm starting to get a little weary and bored. What do you guys do, while running sound, to make it more interesting after you've gotten bored with just watching the show?
     
  2. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    1. Remember that although it is your 10th, 100th, or 1000th time seeing the show, it's the audience's first time, and they deserve the same or better show than on opening night.

    2. Sound especially, varies according to temperature, humidity, audience size, seating dispersion, Jupiter's alignment with Mars, and many other variables. That's why they're using you, and not a computer or trained monkey.
     
  3. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator Premium Member

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    Occupation:
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    Derek's right - it's so important to keep your head in the show and provide the best mix you can. I will admit that by closing night, after seeing the show 15 times or so, I made a couple of mistakes I absolutely shouldn't have. It was because I got "too into the show" and my brain went into autopilot. It's hard, but pay close attention to the lines and to your book and do your best to provide the best mix every night.
     
  4. hsaunier

    hsaunier Active Member

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    If you are the only one running cues, perhaps this would be a good time to find an interested understudy and do some teaching. It's no sure bet that you are going to be there every night.
     
  5. Eboy87

    Eboy87 Well-Known Member

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    Strange, I just finished a dance show with a track that was 30 minutes long: just fader up at the beginning, fader down at the end. I bring a book to read, and glance up after every page to make sure things are going ok, and I read about a page a minute. I also have this weird thing in my subconscious where I know if something's wrong, and immediately put the book down.

    If you have a board with motorized faders, you could always see how far you can fling your pen with recall.

    Most of the time I'm too concerned with what's going on with the band/PA/stage/actor/etc to do anything else. I only read during intermission (if there aren't any problems that need addressing), preshow if I'm not gabbing on headset, and dance shows with obscenely long tracks of Indian music (no offense intended, but it all sounds the same to me).
     
  6. 6ftstudios

    6ftstudios Member

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    i've definitely been there - tired of watching & being engaged with a show after seeing it what seems like 14 million times, but it is important to ALWAYS stay engaged. Mixing is sorta like driving - in order to be successful (and not crash and burn) the operator must be alert and know everything that is happening around them. They must be able to make minor changes frequently and quickly. For example: Working a talent show - someone knocks over a mic stand. If your alert you will notice that the performer is being careless and the mic is about to topple. You quickly mute the mic to avoid hearing a "THUMP" and feedback start to ring through the system b/c the mic is laying on the ground pointed at the monitor. If you're not paying attention well then - you hear the thump, feedback, and every person in the audience is covering their ears.
     
  7. lieperjp

    lieperjp Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
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    For me... it's interesting if I'm having fun... (well, duh) so I do things that will make it fun. Such as participate in the discussions on the coms (normally not DURING the show, but before/intermission) or have some fun backstage (even though I am not on stage crew. One time, (I didn't help, but I watched) glow in the dark paint was put on the back of a bed that was on stage, so the actors would see it but the audience would not. It does get lonely in the booth sometimes, since I am the only one there. It's fun when the spot ops sneak in... And it's always fun to people-watch, especially during a show designed for kids.
     
  8. rosabelle334

    rosabelle334 Member

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    During last fall's performance of Anne of Green Gables, there was literally - 1 set change right at the beginning of the show, 1 (slightly big one)during intermission, 4 curtain openings/closings, and that was it. Our SM's script had writing on only one side of each page, so opposite the page was an entirely blank page. Easy to say that the blank page was far from blank at the end of the show. The crew and SM had tons of fun while we doodled aimlessly in her script. ^.^ We always paid attention, and knew where we were, but it was a really really slow performance. After the set change in the first act, some of the less-dedicated crew members got bored and decided to chill with the actors in the green room or in the set room. They were chastised, of course, but you really could just sit from the beginning of the show until intermission.
     
  9. tech2000

    tech2000 Active Member

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    If you have a laptop, play a game online. Either that or if someone else is around, just talk with them/play cards.

    This happens to me alot.
     
  10. rdagit

    rdagit Member

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    My suggestion... is that if the show is a cue show... that's time to bring out the laptop, book, etc... and wait for the next cue to be called by the SM, as it get's bored...

    If your mixing the show, then I'd say it shouldn't be boring enugh to not pay attention... but you could allways look into your eq if you also designed, nothing big... just little adjustments per each night... maybe count how many times the actor messed up their lines... or an entrance, anything to keep attention on the show...
     
  11. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    Generally, if I'm in the booth (ie out of audience earshot if you're talking on com), and we're not in a standby, I'll be either: doing homework on my computer, wasting time on my computer, or having a lively com conversation. If I'm doing sound out in the house, I'm usually focused on the stage the whole time because if I take the time to set up the FOH table, it means that there will be a good number of live mics out there.
     
  12. tech2000

    tech2000 Active Member

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    At my school we've definately had a lot of lively com conversations. During shows where the renters that come in are on the com, they will even start up some great conversations!
     
  13. Hughesie

    Hughesie Well-Known Member

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    Occupation:
    Freelance Lighting Programmer/grandMA Trainer
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    That could be an olympic sport right there, i can imagine each company dragging our their best desk :rolleyes:
     
  14. DavidDaMonkey

    DavidDaMonkey Active Member

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    I'm currently working on a production of Jesus Christ Superstar. Since its a rock musical, I'm taking alot of liberties with having fun with the reverb. I'm using a TC electronics M-OneXL unit. When ever there are any slow parts (which is rare with 18 body mics and a 6 piece live band) I like to play around with different reverbs. Nothing too noticeable obviously, and nothing that doesn't sound good, but just little changes here and there to things like decay time and room size so that I can get more familiar with what the unit can do.
     

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