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November 8, 2018:

THE RETURN OF THE RANDY VICAR

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, this week has flown by, like a gazelle whose pension check is now one week late.  I simply do not understand how the HELL it can be November already?  Wasn’t I JUST writing GEE?  Well, GEE, it’s now ten months later.  I gotta tell you.  You know, the gazelle is frequently mentioned in these here notes but you know who isn’t mentioned frequently in these here notes and who used to be mentioned with some regularity?  The Randy Vicar, that’s who.  We haven’t had a good Randy Vicar story in a ‘coon’s age, have we?  I read a corker the other day – The Randy Vicar and the Ball Peen Hammer. It was not only a corker but hard-hitting.  I’m turning into a new American opera.

Yesterday was a sort of day.  I got seven hours of sleep, had some telephonic conversations and e-mail volleys, ate a bagel and one matzoh, ascertained that the pension check had once again not arrived and decided that I’ve been upset about it enough already and have resigned myself that nothing will be done about it until Monday and even then heaven knows how long it will take to finally get to me.  I spent quite a bit of time proofing the Carol Christmas packaging, then I shaved and showered, listened to music (some lovely Elgar), and then it was time to mosey on over to the theater to check out the sound layout.

The mic layout at the front of the stage was different than I’d imagined it, but it’s fine.  I think one of the hanging shot gun mics is in the wrong place, so that will get fixed today, and then everyone began arriving, including the artistic director of the theater.  I told everyone to just roll with whatever happened, sound-wise, as they’d just be sussing everything out.  And then we began.  I thought overall it was pretty good, and I could tell that the sound will work fine once they get used to it and our guys smooth it all out.  The tracks sound much better coming from front speakers, the three head mics work great, and they didn’t really make any bad mistakes in terms of cueing tracks, so that was very good.  The artistic director was there to see one thing and one thing only – he saw it and that was a good thing.  I’ll have more on that in tomorrow’s notes.

Our leading lady had a little dizziness problem about two-thirds of the way through the show, so we stopped for a minute and let her get some water and get over it and then we ran straight through to the end.  After, I talked briefly to the sound folks, gave a few notes, and I think everyone felt pretty good about it.  We still have a ways to go with a few performances, but the more we run the better it gets.

After that, I stopped at Jerry’s Deli and got matzoh ball soup, a piece of rye bread, cucumber salad, and a pickle, then came home and ate it all up – very good. I listened to more music – Weill’s Der Jasager, which is a little mini-opera that I enjoyed, then Weill’s concerto for violin and wind instruments – I didn’t think it was all that – very noisy and dissonant from start to finish.  The two fill-ups were Dance of the Tumblers from Lady in the Dark and Gold from Lost in the Stars.  All the selections were originally on mono MGM LPs conducted by Arthur Winograd, and I had ‘em all in the 1970s.  Sound is excellent.

Today, once up I’ll answer e-mails, do a little writing, eat, hopefully pick up packages, and then I’ll get to the theater around six.  I have to restage a couple of things, mostly due to where the mics are place, just to insure that some solos are where the mics are.  And I’ve been noticing that because we’ve lost two performers over the course of rehearsals, that the stage left side of the opening number isn’t balanced, so I’m going to move a couple of people from stage right over there.  I’ll get all that done by the time seven o’clock rolls around, then I’ll spend thirty minutes vacuuming other stuff, and then we’ll begin our run-through.

Tomorrow, I’m in the theater early to dry tech.  I have no idea how long that will take, but I’ll probably just hang out, get some lunch at Dino’s Pizza, and then we being our first tech rehearsal at six. Then we’ll run problem areas until nine or ten, depending on how rough it is. We reconvene at ten Saturday morning for a quick cue-to-cue, followed by a full-out tech/dress.  Then we’ll take an hour lunch, and do a second run, where I’ll allow the cast to mark it vocally if they need to.  I’m planning to let everyone go no later than five, if possible.  Sunday, we convene at ten at the recording studio to lay down the vocal tracks for our cast album, beginning with all the group numbers, then the one additional kids vocal.  Then we begin doing the solos and the duets and go until we finish, which I hope won’t be much later than three.  Then we have a day off, and then it’s straight through to our opening night.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, write, eat, hopefully pick up packages, restage a few things, then do a run-through.  Today’s topic of discussion: What have been your favorite movies of this year so far? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have had a decent run-through with rough sound, and happier for the return of the Randy Vicar.

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