Lawrence O’Brien Arts Centre
Hello, Internet, today is Thursday, March 3rd, and yesterday we had just the most fabulous experience at the Lawrence O’Brien Arts Centre.
After breakfast, we were picked up at our hotel and brought to the theatre, where we set about setting sound levels, running through lighting looks and reminding ourselves how we do the show in a theatre with the screen on the upstage wall.
Around 1:30 pm, about 10 nursing students and probably 240 high school students poured into the gorgeous space that is that theatre (we were saying all day how much we love it and want to bring it home with us), and sat very quietly while Evan, Laura, Crystal and house technician/all-around-useful-person John made the show happen in front of them. The lights looked awesome (with special thanks to John on that one). The sound sounded great. By all reports, the audience was rapt.
(I say “by all reports” because I was hiding in the second dressing room, listening to the show – but only the bits of it that passed through the PA system – on program sound. I admit that, while I will never tire of watching this team work their magic, there is something profoundly stressful about sitting in, or behind, an audience watching a piece I’ve written and directed, and I prefer not to do it, generally. So the second dressing room was a perfect place for me.)
Today’s talk back was the first one we’ve ever done where we didn’t talk about mental health, beyond my directing the audience to their programs for a list of mental health resources. We did, however, get the chance to answer the question: “where did you get the idea for the boxes?”, which gave me the opportunity to praise our excellent designer, Mark Denine. Given that Jonathan has a well-kept collection of comic books, Mark – something of a comic aficionado himself – decided to build our lightweight, adaptable and generally extremely convenient set out of oversized comic book boxes.
And then, Kathleen (Manager) and John Hicks (aforementioned useful person), who had already been driving us around for the better part of two days, rose to the occasion in the venue-we-like-best competition and LOANED US THEIR CAR. So we had to go on an adventure.
First stop was a gift-and-craft-type shop called Slippers ‘n Things, where we all narrowly avoided buying sealskin boots that definitely wouldn’t have fit in our luggage.
…but we did each buy something that was easier to pack. And then, on John’s suggestion, we drove up to the Birch Brook Nordic Ski Club. We didn’t have time to ski, but we did get the grand tour, thanks to a very friendly and enthusiastic volunteer – one of several who run the place.
We will be leaving a little piece of our collective heart in Happy Valley-Goose Bay today when we fly out, assuming the weather cooperates…