Friday, April 20, 2012

The Art begins!

April 19, 2012

by David Dreyfoos
Director of Production

With all of the number crunching behind us, we could now focus on the ART!  Mark [Lamos] selected his designers and once they accepted their contracts, we were off and running.  Design meetings were held and our musical, inspired by German Romanticism, began to take shape.  Mike (you will remember my Baltimore counterpart from my first post), and I received costume sketches and scenic plans.  Along with our technical directors and CENTERSTAGE’s costumer, the production was priced out based on these fully realized sketches and plans.

Just like with any production, there are changes and compromises that need to be made in order to be within budget. We worked for several weeks and met with Mark and the design team to finalize the production elements. We had a show! CENTERSTAGE was doing the heavy lifting by building the costumes, sets, props and painting all of the scenic elements. It was decided that our scenic artist, Michael Minahan, would paint one of the drops to help out with the extraordinary amount of painting that Baltimore needed to accomplish.  A photo of Michael painting the drop was featured in my last post.

Overlapping with this process was casting.   I worked with Katie Byrnes in Baltimore on contracting the actors. As casting was solidified, Katie would send out offers out to the actor’s agents for both theatres but I would follow up with the agents on the particulars of the contract at the Playhouse.  Once we finalized the cast, it was time to head Into the Woods! We began rehearsing in New York City on February 7th and after having a meet and greet that day with the cast and many staff members from both theatres, we now found ourselves actually implementing all of the assumptions that were discussed so many months ago.  It was now time to get rehearsal props, furniture, and costumes into the city from Baltimore. 

Three weeks of rehearsal can go faster than you can imagine. All of the driving, lifting, schlepping and logistics gave way to a smooth rehearsal period and now it was time to head to Baltimore for the first leg of the journey. 
Stay tuned for the next post about the inner-workings of our co-production with CENTERSTAGE.

Performances begin in Westport on May 1st.

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