One of our continuing challenges at Village Players is finding volunteers to work on various production committees. One committee in particular seems to present greater challenges than others—set construction. There appears to be the perception that set construction is somehow more complex or requiring of more skills than some of our other production components. Actually, set construction is one of the more basic elements of a show, and the skills involved are to a large part, simply those needed for routine house maintenance and repair. Even better, due to the unique nature of a stage set, construction does not have to be “perfect.” In many cases, close is good enough as the gaps and mistakes are often covered up by paint or decoration. As we are fond of saying on the set crew, “if they’re looking at the set, there is something wrong with the play!”
So let’s say you are a VP member, especially a “new” member, who’d like to get involved at the theatre. Set construction is a great place to start. Construction generally takes place two nights a week and typically begins the week after the closing of the prior show. Our greatest set construction need: people with the time to show up and help out. While advanced tool and woodworking skills are a wonderful addition, the bottom line is that we benefit tremendously from basic, hands-on help–people who can take simple directions and are willing to try something new.
You’ll benefit as well and you might just surprise yourself. Set building teaches skills in woodworking, stage techniques (such as flying objects, knot tying, rigging), safe power tool use (let’s get those safety glasses), and a host of others. C’mon out and give it a try!
Calling all VP Females!!
Here’s an interesting proposal: Next season, one of our shows features a (nearly) all-woman cast. “Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean” has one male role, but the heavy lifting will be done by the cast of women. As part of this female-centered event, someone (who shall remain nameless) is promoting the unique idea of an all-woman set building crew. Several female members have already expressed interest in the concept which also lends itself to an interesting publicity angle. How about you? When we put out the call, can we count on YOU to respond? –Gary Mach