Monday, 12 April 2010

11th March- 12th April

Been busy with university work- forgotten to keep up to date with blog so apologies.

1) Mexican night
Came in at 10 and made decorations that were pinyatas, cacti, Mexican men,Mexican flags etc for SU night.
After we finished we had a pint and admired art work.
At 8 we were all in SU on the door or having a good time. A very successful night led by Jennie and Jade and made a profit.

2) Changes
Now made changes to the parade making it a story so the design team are a bit stuck with ideas - have stopped making stuff until we know story which is annoying but been making face moulds for masks so half the classes in the workshops can make masks and made things for Mexican Night. Also the design team are going to lead the making day, Saturday 22nd May.

3) Morris Dancers
Me, Charlotte, Zoe and Emily went to Kingston to see Morris dancers. So fun. Took part in trying to morris dance. The morris dancers showed a fertility dance to me and Zoe, which was filmed!!

4) Contacts
Keep trying to meet up with my contacts but the ones who responded say they'll get in touch after Easter.

5) Ham House Easter Event
Me, Siobhan and Zoe went to Ham House to facepaint and to hand out flyers for big event. I wasn't going to facepaint as didn't want to destroy kid's faces or get it on clothes so gave out the flyers and Gary gave us an Easter Egg when we had finished. It was a busy but relaxing fun day to be had by all.

The design team decided not to make our things in workshops, as people didn't turn up. We also needed a kick up the bum to pursue with our contacts in the meeting with Mark.

7) Feelings
I feel pleased with project. Ok, got a lot of work to do but we've got this project off the ground and brought it to life due to hard work. Much more relaxed than a couple of weeks ago. I feel like we are on top of project and it could be a great success.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

these two weeks 26th february- 10th March

Right. Monday before last- went to Ham House to familiarize ourselves with Ham House once again. Very beneficial as realized size of grass squares. Then had meeting in The Fox and Duck pub, which was so relaxed and was nice to socialize with group outside university. Then had some food which Pretti and Tai arranged for us. The Thai food was lovely and greatly appreciated.

Then on Tuesday we had design meeting in the S.U. writing up worksheets for costumes and props made accompanied with a pint of cider and black. Students til we die!! Then in evening I went to bell ringing in All Hallows church in Twickenham and I get vertigo so climbing ladders and the spiral staircase was a scary experience. Not as scary as the tower swaying when the bell ringing was taking place. I didn't realize the complexity and concentration needed for bell ringing and am very grateful as I learnt a lot about the art. When I had a go, it was hilarious, I could not get hang of it. I was scared I wouldn't let go and go up with the bell but thankfully I succeeded in the end.

This week I've re-emailed my Kingston schools hoping they'll get into gear and express their interest and e-mail back. Did have 4 schools reply, which is positive when I said "there is a limited number". It can be so frustrating trying to get people interested. Feel like banging my head against a brick wall.

Trying to get in touch with drag queens due to Mark's comment about there needing to be more comedy quirky acts but this is proving difficult as know how much drag queens earn at a gig and they will want to be paid otherwise they won't do it. But shall keep on trying my hardest believe me.

I'm going to ring all Kingston schools who have not got back to me by today tomorrow and try to get them interested.

I'm also DSMing at my local theatre Questors in Sweeney Todd the musical. Its fun and a great experience as that is the career I want to do. It's all been a bit of a blur the past two weeks. Sweney Todd and D.I.C. have taken over my life but I can deal with it.

On the design side, not much has been happening really due to hectic schedules. As I said we wrote out how to make everything and thats it as far as I can remember as we didn't have a meeting this week. I'm trying to find a job for next yesr as well as stage management experience so I am reading a lot and doing a lot of research.

We made flowers successfully last Thursday.

Got a very hectic schedule for the next few months that I'm getting used to but determined to get my work done on time successfully and be a successful DSM. A case of balancing university work, pleasure and socializing and questors voluntary work experience which is scary but exciting.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

8th Feb-25th Feb

Ok just want to get this out of the way before start.
Arrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm so stressed and tired because of many problems but going to calm down, even though I feel frustrated, low and worried I'll write my blog in a sensible format.

These two weeks have been ok in fact that I'm starting to get replies from Kingston schools. In the process of arranging a meeting with the teachers. Two Thursdays ago the whole group made masks successfully but we didn't have all the materials to make group's masks look interesting which was disheartening but I suppose it was just ideas we passed on. Found it really easy to teach the class how to make masks and really enjoyed the process.

We've had various productive meetings with Tina, made and discussed things including masks, flowers and hats. It's a fun lesson. I genuinely get on with the d.i.c. group and Tina is a star because I appreciate her time and help she gives!We are going to make face moulds for the 1 successful type of mask on Tuesday so we can take that into schools.

Other teams have been hard at work. Fund raising is successful and house liaison team and events coordination are working on presentation for the 4th March. Basically a plan of what's happening on day and estimated numbers. The events liaison team feed back from all our questions to Gary and Jorge, the Ham House managers, which is helpful. I don't think we've realised amount of people we'll be dealing with and timing issues arose in meeting. I'm disappointed by commitment of certain people. I know people have reason for not being in meetings, but it seems to be the same people on the ball time after time again and its not fair.

For example last Thursday was a poor turn out and we didn't have meetings/workshops. I understand as people went home for reading week. On Monday there was a poor turn out so I beg people to make these meetings- we need you there. I've got DSM work in Questors for work experience purposes which I'm excited about so it's going to be busy for me again but I prefer to be kept on my toes rather than doing nothing. Anyways I need to e-mail schools and make flowers in the workshop today xx

Thursday, 11 February 2010

25th-7th January/February

We've made a lot of progress in the last two weeks with contacting people and getting responses so we can chase the responses ans start workshops. We had our first meeting with Tina. What a lovely, clever and helpful lady. We gave her our ideas of the procession and she gave us some ideas with the different blocks of colur for the pieces of grass and the "community rainbow" procession. Our ideas just seemed to bounce off one another. So far, we've got ideas of masks, flowers, different groups in different coloured t-shirts, big puppets like a chinese dragon. Then we also thought of ways of decorating pushchairs or wheelchairs and to have different blocks of grass for different performances in Ham House. We thought of simplistic things such as all the red block to have a red belt. So last Thursday we put our ideas to the group which they loved.

We all have our set roles. I'm inthe design team. It's absolute madness. We are doing 2 events and organizing 1000 people to parade into Ham House, see performances and then sing a few songs including Happy Birthday to Ham House. We all agreed to keep to the recycled theme and make costumes out of recyclable material. Tina helped us with where we could get everything. already we've got 42 school choirs. I'm getting scared now!!! On Monday we didn't really talk about much. Karina gave feedback from Georg and Gary. I really like the drama in the community group as we all are close and can co-operate well so I feel confident this project is going to be a success.

Last Tuesday we had a making masks workshop with Tina. All the design team can back me up on this by saying how useful and fun it was. I think we all got a bit too carried away. Now we can put our newly found skills into teaching mask workshops to peers and children in schools so the children have their masks for the procession.

Also, I've been cracking on with finding contacts for Kingston and Richmond schools and churches. I'm so busy. I'm helping Charotte with Arabian Nights plus other lecture requirements so I must go and crack on with some more work and teach the drama in the community group how to make masks.

Sunday, 24 January 2010

The Lion King Review

We went to see The Lion King on Thursday 21st January 2010. The opening was phenomenal with the puppets and dancers coming down the aisles. It is a clever performance with the set and puppets. Although I felt a bit bored as knew what was going to happen as seen it once before and the first time was a better experience due to it being amazing, unbelievable and breath taking. My favourite character was Rafiki who spoke in Click, danced and added humour to the piece. I wanted to get up and sing and dance with the actors sometimes as knew the words. I wouldn't go back to see it again though as thought my expectations were too high and was brought down by disappointment.

18th-22nd January 2010 This week

Well it's been a hectic week. We started delegating roles for 400th birthday party at Ham House. I'm doing design because am interested in costume. We had a year meeting followed by a D.I.C. meeting on Monday and told what the plan for Ham House was which made me a little more relaxed about the project and started to think about who we might include in the 400th birthday party. A carnival procession with eight plots of grass as stages was a great idea. We heard how our colleagues got on in Spain with Spiral. We are going to develop ideas based on the carnival theme. I thought we could incorporate schools by encouraging them to perform something. For example in a past lecture, we had to create a performance based on "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night time" and would like to teach children our lesson plans so they can do a performance relating to the book. We've been asked to start getting in contact with schools or community centres. The people who went to Spiral had a great idea of different banners being created by the children that were draped out of the windows. I would like to use idea as I think this is important as the children then can feel like they've added something to the 400th birthday party. I feel excited but nervous at the same time about Ham House's 400th birthday party.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

20th December 2009

Into the Hoods

On Sunday I went to the Southbank Centre to see Into the Hoods which is classed as hip hop theatre. The plot is based on all different fairy tales but they have been put into the modern day, i.e. MC Rapunzel and Lil Red. The hip hop dancing was impressive but I don't know why but I expected an outstanding quality and it didn't come up to my expectations. The people had obviously rehearsed and I couldn't fault the dancing but the storyline didn't seem to flow and the plot seemed quite stilted and wooden. As for the acting, well that was bad but they were focusing on the dancing. It was very interesting to note that they only used recorded music and voices and not any live music or live voices. The set and technology was very complex with projections and moving pieces of scenery and projections of writing coming up as the character is writing it. It did have an impact on me but I wouldn't go back.

19th December 2009

Saturday was very hectic to say the least. It was non stop. I was roaming, then face painting and then back to roaming again. Only 7-8 people were in and it was a very busy day as we had about 500 people come through the doors. We all knew the routine inside out by now and to be honest I was getting bored of my story. Again, I'm so sorry to the children I was attempting to face paint. It was a disaster but I know I'll feel empty and lost without Ham House. The creative collab performances were so impressive and inspirational.

13th december 2009

Well this was going to be a very busy day as there were only a few of us in. I was roaming for an hour in the freezing cold then facepainting and then back to roaming and it was so cold. I felt my character had developed into a pantomime dame, I was so loud I was told to keep the noise down. This was the busiest day. I think about 600 people came. I'm finding when I tell the story to children, they either get bewildered and confused, understand or love the story. They sometimes just walked away in the middle of my story but I find it much easier to concentrate as I direct my story to the children with my eyes and gestures.

12th December 2009

Saturday at Ham House. The start of our second weekend. It was quite busy and I really enjoyed telling my story. I felt like as I got more confident with my story, the more my character developed and became real. I feel sorry for the kids who come to me for facepainting. I try my best but I feel so pressurized when the parents keep looking over to see what you're doing. The children ask for really random things but I do enjoy face painting. i like to see the children's happy faces at the end.

11th december 2009

In Lesson

What we did:

We had a meeting about next semester. We discussed the different sorts of ways that we could be assessed. We discussed our participation in the 400th birthday at Ham House.


I feel really excited but nervous about next semester. Next semester is going to be a very hectic schedule.


I want to use our "Curious Incident of the dog in the Night time" physical theatre piece in our workshops. I want to do reminiscence theatre and work with people with special needs.

6th December 2009

Second day of Ham House. We got feedback and amended our rota to make ourselves more busy and have less breaks. We talked about what worked and what didn't. Everyone was much more confident. I felt that I really enjoyed Sunday as I really enjoyed telling my stories and I got into my character and dramatized the story. I was pleased roaming outside as you could see the children's reactions. Overall it was a busier, much more successful day.

5th December 2009

First day at Ham House. I think everyone was a bit apprehensive about the day such as with the face painting. I don't think we knew how the audience would react. For the first couple of hours the basement was very quiet. I found it very difficult to roam inside the house so I went outside. I also found it hard to tell my stor to adults as it was more directed to children. I found that my confidnce grew throughout the day. I found that I got into my character as the day went on. I really enjoyed the face painting bit but I found that lots of children wanted tigers. I felt really inspired by all the playtext pieces and all the effort put in by everyone. The whole experience of the first day at Ham House was patchy throughout.