As you will see, this story will explain why I have choosen technical theatre :wink: maybe.

As I have stated before, I am rather new to the technical theatre scene. IN the past year I have sort-of been in transition. Well, also in the past year the following things have occured:

--I was hanging lights for our designer in the catwalk of our theatre at school, and as I was rechecking the lights on the sheet, I felt my leg kick something rather hard. I looked down just in time to see a small zoom fall out of the catwalk and crash into the balcony below. Apparantly the only visual damage was a bent shutter, a nd perhaps 20 years off the instrument itself.

-- For the same show (yes they allowed me to continue working on the show) I was cutting gels for the cyc lights, and not having cut gels for these lights before, I did not realize the gel should not be....square....long story short the designer was so happy with me when he walked down to check on me he let me fix every single gel. It wall all but 6 (~50)

--I lit a 24 hour theatre show and somehow programmed the board wrong and put the lights out on the actors while they were in the midst of delivering their lines. A few minutes scramble and I was running the show on submasters

--and other small things like kicking a floor mic, hanging an entire row of lights....wrong....deleting submasters accidentally....not my submasters unfortunately.

All things considered I would say I have had a great year and am looking forward to making more mistakes in time to come!
Thats nothing wait till you play with lights that are worth 3 grand and up a pice. i was on a show last year where a pall 1200 a very expensive moving light was crushed to nothing more then a 1 foot by 2 foot cube thats an major opps

just the other day using the lift, two of my techies were smart enougn to put up the railing around it, but not smart enough to push in all the pins...apparently they didn't see them all, so they left some out, and as one of them was climbing up, the small railing section fell....it almost missed him, but clipped his shoulder. left a nice bruise, thank God nothing more!! Get an icepack, pull the lift down, show the two techs what they did wrong, so they won't do it again...honest mistake, we made sure the kid was ok, and it's all good, very very very luckily!!!

everyone makes mistakes. The only ones that are really really horrible are the ones where people get hurt. A few years ago, someone apparently fell on a really long extensionladder, and broke their back. I wasn't here then. But, I have heard the dude is ok, it wasn't so bad it paralyzed him, it just meant years and years of therapy. Then, just a year or two ago, someone didn't secure the front section of the lift railing, and it fell down (it's much bigger than the other section) and hit a guy on the head....left himout cold and with a really big bump. Overall, don't beat yourself up over beating equipment up, just watch out, and always do your best to be safe.
The thing to keep in mind is that you have learned valuable lessons from all of these mistakes and therefore, should think of them more as learning opportunities.

People generally do not get too upset with people who make mistakes through lack of knowledge or supervision or just bad luck. They do however, get extremely angry with people who continue to make the same mistake twice. (Also when the person tries to hide the mistake or blame someone else).

We all make mistakes and we all learn from them and grow as people and as professionals
I guess I have never had anything that bad happen... Excpet on show, I knocked over an instrument sitting on the ground... the bulb broke, but not the lense... And on other small accindent in which I broke 2 florcent bulbs above me while moving a 12' ladder out of the back where the rafters are at 13'... That was fun, and just to make it more fun, the fire dept. was there at the time investigating a possible gas leak. Other than that... the only really bad things that have happened along the lines of deleting submasters and stuff (though that hasen't happened to me before) I've hung an entire show and then had it look so bad that I stripped it all down and started over, on Monday and Tuesday of tech week... we didn't run full full lights untill family night... and even then I was still ajusting the levels during the show
well lets see....ive made so many its hard to remember them all. but everyone i made i learned something new.

freshman year: building the set for the nerd, i read the tape measure wrong i said "8 feet" instead of "80 inches" it looked like "8.0" so we ended up making the door way 8ft tall but then we added a header. but the td who i told the measurement to didnt say anything. so now i know most door ways are 6'8" or 80 inches.

for some rap concert(we finally got them banned at our school) i wasnt doign lights but i was sitting there and the lady wanted the lights to flash and with the light ops premission i attemped too. so i pushed the flash button. and all the lights went out. some how the show sub was deletled. yeah...that was fun and when i knew nothigna bout the board.

sophmore year: i just learned how to program the board and such. i get to design our band halloween concert. i blow over 12 lamps just in the 3-4 days programing and such. i learned alot about the board form that show.

junior year: intermission for skin of our teeth i had to go to the restroom at 6min. so i went took 3 mins to get there, so i come out and its 2 min warn everyone is coming back so im stuck in a crowd trying to get the the board, so my sm has to run back to the booth and hit go. yeah not fun.

well those were the ones i could think of right away.

edit: i remembered a few.

junior year cont: i went to update our light board's software and in the process it froze up and i went to turn it on and nothing would load. i came here and the light newtork and found help. the memory was full. yeah i didnt tell my director but someone saw it on here and told him. he wasnt happy that i didnt tell him but he was proud that i took care of the problem myslef.

and the most recent show at school. midsummer, i was on the loading gallery cuting the tape that held the drop lines and when i was climbing back up to the gride the knife which i put in my cargo pocket and velcroed it shut. and it felt out and almost hit my director(missed him by 5ft...)

yeah so i get blamed for most stuff in the theatre.
propmonkey, when you say "i blow over 12 lamps just in the 3-4 days programing and such" how exactly did you manage to blow 12 lamps in such a short time?
Hmmm, theater snafus eah? Well the most recent one I hve been involved in was the spring's show. My board is a colortran innovator (I know, I know) and it likes to dump its memory infrequently and at the most inconvienent time. Regardless I spent four hours before the opening night reprograming the enitre show from my memory.

Talk about stress sickness.
Hmmm, theater snafus eah? Well the most recent one I hve been involved in was the spring's show. My board is a colortran innovator (I know, I know) and it likes to dump its memory infrequently and at the most inconvienent time. Regardless I spent four hours before the opening night reprograming the enitre show from my memory.

Talk about stress sickness.
programing fx. and fast changes.
jyenish said:
My board is a colortran innovator (I know, I know) and it likes to dump its memory infrequently and at the most inconvienent time.

I feel your pain, we have a Colortran Scenemaster that lost it's memory every time it was turned off.(then the disc drive started to fail)

moral of the story: have a service tech replace the internal batteries every three years or so.

I really have not had many catastrophic failures, I once dropped a new fresnel bulb(only had 2 at the time)down the staircase.
Anonymous said:
well the moral of the story . does it really need a moral

no, not really, but a little punctuation would be nice.

funny story though! One fresnel at my youth was thought to be blown, took it down, was looking at it, looks fine. Plug it in, it works! Screwd with it, turns out the cable shorts just a little right at the plug. Figure I'll just put the lamp in another fresnel that works but has no lamp, instead of trying to replace the plug right then. Well, youknow how the brass base is connected to the ceramic or whatever body of the lamp? Yeah, this lamp is so old that the "glue" that held it on was, well, falling out liek sand. If I had left it in, it would have been fine, but it fell apart because I didn't....the force of putting it in a new fresnel tore it apart.
My wrost screw up..

Stoping the music in the middle of the last dance on closing night. I was doing 60things at once and accadently changed the track....I fastforwarded and actually saved it. I got it within 10 seconds, making it ok.. That was fun. I had the mic on my com turned off cuz i was telling someone something and then didnt realize it when the entire tech crew was screaming.. Later i explanied, and for it being the first show i worked on they were ok with it, and basicly were like at l.east you got it saved.
We recently did Flowers For Algernon for our fall production, and just got a Laptop to run any sound effects or music we were going to use... well Friday night the computer was acting kind of picky (of course, its the law that something goes wrong) well one of the sound effects we were using was applause and I had it set to play for the cue and when I hit play instead of the appluase "every body have fun tonight" came through the speakers... I was terrified and I think I turned a new shade of red! I dont think my director was too upset (actually I think he was outside... Thank goodness!) But yeah, that horrible, almost as playing cows mooing instead of the horses racing during the ascot scene in My fair lady (it was only during tech week!) yay me and my mistakes!
I would have to say my worst was jumping a cue on the light board. While most times this isn't bad, there was this part of our musical last year that was very tender. The lights on stage were dim with a spot on this one girl who was saying a very sweet little passage. I hit go and caused the big applause light to flash behind her. And the audience applauded.

Worst ooops of mine was climbing out of a lift, and the back of my shirt caught the edge of a fixture that needed to be hung. It came out of the lift with me, and crashed. Oh, well. It was only $1800. Fortunately, the owner got it repaired under warranty (so he claimed).
avkid said:
I wish I had an applause light!

We still have the applause light. A teacher had a birthday party in the gym/theater space so I brought it out and hooked it up for them :D

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