Today's blog is about stage rehearsal. I love transparency! I believe the more you know the "method behind the madness" the more understandable everything becomes! It's nice to know why we do things the way we do!
I have had several questions about stage rehearsals over the years. Why is it so short? Is it really that important? What happens if we are late or don't show up?
I have spent over 25 years teaching in the dance studio industry, have taught at over 15 studios, and have danced professionally myself for 10 years. I have been exposed to so many different ways of running dress rehearsals! Over these years, I have spent hours upon hours at dress rehearsals. What I noticed after all of these rehearsals, was the amount of time I was sitting in the theater "waiting" to go onstage! The actual time that I spent onstage was minimal to the amount of time that I spent waiting. We would be required to show up at 4:00 until sometimes 9 or 10 PM and have to run the show in order, and then maybe we would get to run through our dance once or twice if we were lucky. I feel like everyone's time is valuable and many people don't have enough of it! I then decided, "Why should I make people spend their entire evenings at the theater when their dancer is really only getting 10-15 minutes of actual st age time?" This is why I decided to break the stage rehearsals at Dance Connections down in bits and only really require dancers to show up for the time when they are actually onstage. This saves everyone time and energy….so even if you think that it's not a big deal to miss this short rehearsal, it is a rehearsal all about quality over quantity.
In saying this…we do ask that you arrive at least 15 minutes prior to your stage time so you are ready to go when your class is called. We also run a very strict schedule. Running late not only takes up more valuable time for everyone in the show, but we also only rent the theater for a certain time frame and cannot run over. This is why if you are late, you will miss your child's time onstage. So, please make every effort to be there at the "Arrival Time" stated in your dancer's recital papers and not the stage time.
Many wonder if the actual stage rehearsal is really that important. I have to say yes! It really is! The purpose of stage rehearsals is for the dancers to get used to performing on the stage rather than a classroom and to review spacing, as the stage is much bigger compared to the classrooms. It is necessary for the lighting designer to program lighting cues, the sound designer to figure out music and microphone levels and the stage manager to choreograph any changes that need to be made. It also really helps your dancer know where to dance on the stage and how far forward, backward, and sideways he or she can go. Other factors that can be new and something dancers need to adjust to are the differences in the stage floor from the studio floor and the addition of stage lights that can be a bit bright. When someone misses a rehearsal, it not only throws that person off, but their fellow dancers as well because spacing can be very confusing when not all dancers are present. This is why we ask you to make every effort to get your dancer to rehearsal and why we post our schedule in January in order for you to have it on you schedule. We honestly understand how busy everyone's schedule is, but hope that you will make this a priority.
I hope this blog has helped you understand a little more about where we are coming from and why we believe our stage rehearsals are necessary.
Stay tuned for the next blog about why we require wristbands in our show!!!