I have received a lot of support recently in light of technical difficulties of Pippin posted in the last two posts. Thanks for the words of encouragement.
Lighting is going much better with lights hung and focused. The show has been lighted and cues fixed. We have a lot of nice looks but scene changes are still difficult since I am bent on having the scene changes take place quickly and without blackouts on stage. Lighting designer, Claudia Chan, left this morning just as quietly as she came here to Shantou University. She left as much knowledge as she could in one lighting design student who will likely receive a “certification” to operate lights in the Great Hall theater at the end of the show. Certification was requested by the adminstration since it’s not a common practice to let students operate theater equipment.
Sound is the up and coming issue. A sound design expert is being shipped in from Hong Kong at the 11th hour. Musicals are inherently hard to mix because so many microphones are necessary (body mics, stage mics, and band mics) and the show moves quickly. We’re counting on the experience to make the show go smoothly without too much feedback.
The acting is improving although admittedly not at my doing. Julia Hsiao, the vice chancellor, has taken the leading actors and actresses to spice up their acting and movement. She has directly given them exact orders of what to do for each and every lyric and line. I suppose that is necessary for a group of brand new actors especially in the Chinese culture, but I would have hoped that they would have made some creative choices by themselves.
There are still are a bunch of dead spots in the show. All of them are correctable except for perhaps the singing. Singing, of course, makes or breaks the show.