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Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . .

Discussion in 'Safety' started by LordOfTheTechies, Nov 26, 2008.

  1. LordOfTheTechies

    LordOfTheTechies Member

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    I was a secondary rigger for my theatre's last show, and somehow I was supposed to run rail and keep track of the crew and check the set after each scene change. But that's all beside the point. We were having a very rushed scene change during a tech rehearsal, and as I was flying out a drop, the set crew started pushing a set peice forward too early. Of course, right at that moment, my foot gets caught in my clear com cable and I look down literally for 2 seconds to fix it before a trip (I never ever ever look away from what I'm doing). And then I hear RIIIIP. The set went right through the drop. If I had been looking at what I was doing, I could have seen what was about to happen and stopped moving the drop before the set actually hit it. Anyway, the director was really mad and yelled across the entire theatre for the other rigger to take me off rail. Wow, how humiliating. Now I feel really really stupid, and the director is STILL realy really pissed at me. Does anyone else have some stories of bad or just plain stupid rigging mistakes?
     
  2. len

    len Well-Known Member

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    Seems like an over-reaction to me. Mistakes happen. And you'll learn from it and never do it again. Now, someone else will go up there and possibly make a mistake. And they'll get replaced. And so on. I'm guessing you're in a school situation. So take several lessons from this:

    Keep your com cable clear

    Focus on finishing a task

    Sometimes the boss will make a rash decision
     
  3. VAPADean

    VAPADean Member

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    Okay, how about doing sound for a show and running a PC with a bunch of music clips and sound effects on SoundForge and after the last cue deciding to shut down the computer, just so it would be done, forgetting that the board still had the channel up (as well as not disabling the computer sound effects before we started the run) and during a soft intimate moment in the play, the Windows shutdown plays joyfully throughout the theatre. The Director knew I was a stupid idiot but didn't yell at me because I was also the Director...
     
  4. cdub260

    cdub260 CBMod CB Mods

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    We've had that same thing happen a couple of times at the Pageant. Our playback device for the video segments of the show is a PC laptop, and at least once a season, early in the run, our operator forgets to check with our mixer to see if the channel is muted before switching off his computer.

    And this is in the presence of 2600 paying customers.:rolleyes:
     
  5. What Rigger?

    What Rigger? I'm so fly....I Neverland.

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    Occupation:
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    Not at home, that's for sure.
    Nobody got hurt or killed. Money fixes sets, but it doesn't fix mangled/dead bodies. THAT is sometimes your only reward in rigging. The director will get over it someday (or not, but really, who cares in this case?) You can still sleep at night. In all my years, I've been yelled at, fired, have quit, etc...I've never been given an "atta boy" for being safe and I don't care-but I've never injured anyone and that makes all the difference.

    Besides, all sets/drops eventually go in the trash to some degree anyway.:grin:
     
    Nikgwolf and (deleted member) like this.
  6. mnfreelancer

    mnfreelancer Active Member

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    Like I always say, no matter how far south a show goes, we'll be wrapping cables by 11.
     
  7. jared555

    jared555 Member

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    In response to those mentioning the windows shutdown tone.... It would be good practice to require people shut off ALL windows sounds (and sound in any other running programs) before a show.... The option is in the control panel
     
  8. Chris15

    Chris15 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Re rigging catching on things, it happens in pro circles as well. I was on a show last week and there was a drape that flew in and out to reveal or conceal a choir through the show. There was a 25mm steel pole in the bottom of that drape to weight it down and that caught on the scaffolding as the drape flew out at one point. Sure the guy operating it hit the E stop on the hoist pretty quickly, but things like this do happen and how you react in most cases makes all the difference. Note also that there is a good reason for E stops... A 500kg rated hoist doesn't care what that 500kg is, people, stage, whatever... If you go over 500kg it may signal an overload if you are lucky, if not it may lift the load and then dramatically drop said load...
     
  9. Sony

    Sony Active Member

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    I was watching a The Merry Wives - The Musical at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford upon Avon in 2006. Judi Dench was playing Mistress Quickly. Well partway through the first act a LARGE piece of a house is flown in while another piece is moved horizontally out of the way. Well, the large house piece came in...but the bottom piece didn't go out and the two collided destroying a large part of the piece that was flying in and almost collapsed on Judi Dench. Somebody hit the E-Stop in time luckily and no one was hurt but they had to stop the show for 20 minutes while they fixed the problem. That was probably the worst rigging mess up I have ever personally witnessed.
     
  10. renegadeblack

    renegadeblack Active Member

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    At the store I work at we play music from XM through a computer that is plugged into a receiver with speakers. We have those sounds turned off, I wouldn't see why someone who is going to use a computer for sound cues or what not wouldn't just disable all of the sound effects as soon as they got the machine. Something nice about Windows Vista in that regard is that it's sound mixer allows you to control all of the different programs volume outside of the program. I think that's pretty **** cool!
     
  11. Esoteric

    Esoteric Well-Known Member

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    Here is one for you. I was the show rigger on a production of oh crap. What is that Paula Vogel AIDS play? I just forgot. Anyway, part of my job was that the TD and lead rigger decided (and I was against this from the beginning) that they would use a friction wrap to keep black fabric wrapped around the hospital bed cover for the end of the play (since the director threw a FIT about being able to see it the whole time), so part of my job was to make sure it was wrapped perfectly. I was against this in the beginning and after doing it a dozen times with no actors, I was really against it. But who was I, jus the show rigger and the guy that had to operate it every night. Not too tight so that it would come undone when it flew in without assistance, and not too loose so that it would come undone during the play and expose the curtain. Well it scares me when anything has to be done PERFECTLY 30 times a run. Especially because this flew in directly over someone laying in a bed on stage and they must, after it comes down immediately do a quick change. So one night I set it and get ready for the show. I set it exactly like every other time, but I guess this time it was a hair too tight. You see what is coming. I fly it in (this was a custom rig, no counter weight, I basically undid it held on best I could and then let it fly and I mean FLY in, almost to the point of being out of control before I stop it and release the wrap) and either it was a hair too tight or it did not fly in fast enough that the bump did not loosen the wrap, and WHAM! One side came loose, the other side didn't and the 1 1/4" black iron pipe in side weighting down the white fabric that made the hospital drop slams directly down the middle of the bed and hits the actor square in the face. Then the other side came undone and the whole thing settled down. The actor to his credit got up and finished and the play. After the performance the director flipped! Said she was going to make us practice it a hundred times to make sure we got it right. Halfway through her tirade I walked out and called the TD and lead rigger. They showed up, we explained what happened and he (with the professor in charge) ruled that the wrap would not be used anymore. The Director hated me and never got over it, but the actor did, after I bought him a few drinks and no one was seriously hurt.

    Mike
     
  12. photoatdv

    photoatdv Active Member

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    Re: Wow, I feel really stupid now. . . . .

    Humm... That doesn't sound like a good idea or safe. Flying an out of control object down around someone with an improvised system. Maybe I'm wrong, but was anyone there trained to do this kind of rigging? Though I'm sure it looked good.
     
  13. Esoteric

    Esoteric Well-Known Member

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    Oh yeah, the lead rigger, the overseeing professor, and the TD were all certified riggers.

    Mike
     
  14. photoatdv

    photoatdv Active Member

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    Okay, I take back the part about nobody knowing what they were doing. It still just doesn't sound like something 3 trained riggers would decide to do. The one guy I know that is qualified to do rigging stuff is more careful than most people with rigging.
     

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