Well, here we go. It is now five days until the performance of Dear Harvey. It'll be this Sunday at 2:00pm, a matinee performance. I think I've done everything I could do to promote this play. The theater usually puts out 70 posters around town for other performances, but I put out 96...it's everywhere. As my cast is all high school students, I even got permission to post the posters in all 5 high schools in Las Cruces.
You will obviously get from this post that it's gate time and I'm as nervous as hell..
The theater holds 422 people, and I calculated (rather hoped for) 150 people to attend. It's the grandest theater in Las Cruces, closed in 1982 as too old, renovated to it's grandeur and reopened 2 years ago. We're planning a "meet and greet the cast" reception following the performance at the theater. If I can expect 150 to buy tickets and attend then maybe 1/2 or 75 will stay for the reception. That's the food that I've ordered...for 75. What happens if we fill this theater? It holds 422 people. I'm going to run out of food. Las Cruces is known for people not ordering tickets in advance, they just show up. What happens if we fill this theater? I'm going to run out of food. What happens if no one shows up? I'm going broke. What happens if the show flops and no one wants to contribute? I'm broke. Remember, this is a fundraiser for our Centers youth center.
I have a full head of hair, even at my age, but I'm pulling it out quickly. I've never produced a play before, and I would like to know if other producers go through the same anxiety.
The cast is great, the director is so talented and we've had tons of community support. So why am I a total wreck?
These kids are so into this play now after not knowing who Harvey Milk was that I have decided to buy them all polo shirts with the play's logo silk screened on the front. We're having our full dress rehearsal this Saturday, and I'm going to give them out then.
Most of these kids have never been to this theater, so we held a rehearsal there tonight. They were in awe with the place. Katy (the director) and I sat in mid theater and found out that the acoustics were so much better that projection (which has always been a problem) was not an issue,
There is a PowerPoint projection of slides during the performance of Harvey and his times behind the actors. The tech guy has worked out a way to show the slides above the actors and place them at locations where the actors are vacant that it comes across wonderfully...no shadows of the actors or slides in their faces.
I had a scare today. We had a production meeting 4 weeks ago and it was agreed that the school, Alma d'arte, would do the programs. I found out tonight that nothing has been done on them...panic time. Katy has already put together the program and all she needs to be done is have the school print them. whew!
These kids are stressed. Graduation from high school is the night before the performance. on Saturday. So at the final dress rehearsal on Saturday, I'm going to give each one of them a white polo shirt with the play's logo silk screened on the front. I'm also going to ask them to wear them during the "meet and greet the cast" so that they can be identified. I want people to know what a great job that they did and to have them tell of their experience about understanding who Harvey Milk was what what he stood for to the audience. This is all about education.
My most challenging thing is to find bullhorns to borrow. Harvey used a bullhorn when he addressed crowds. The police and fire departments don't use them anymore. I had approached the local school, but they don't know me. I wouldn't loan my equipment to someone that I didn't know. So, I asked the principle of Alme d'arte (for those of you who don't know this high school, it's an arts charter high school in Las Cruces) to contact the people that he knows in the other high schools to see if we could borrow their bull horns. Every athletic and band department has to have them. Well, with graduations coming up this week, he's swamped and I've not heard back from him.
When will this frustration and anxiety end?
But, you know something? I'm at my wits end, and...I absolutely love it. I'm so happy that this is coming together. It will happen. I think I've done all that I can do at this point and now it will just happen.
Wish me luck. No! don't wish me luck. Send checks, cash, promissory notes for our youth center...just kidding.
I'm actually having the time of my life.