Saturday, April 2, 2011

Saturday Morning Memory: Variations on a Theme

So I apologize in advance if anyone's been getting sick of all the Broadway talk lately, but it's brought back a great memory from high school.

My senior year we did Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat . . . probably better known as just Joseph because holy crap talk about a mouthful of a name! Anyway, it was a huge production with a cast of thousands . . . or, well, dozens at least. Of girls. There were barely enough guys to cover all the male roles - in fact, the guy who played Potiphar also played Reuben, and I don't quite remember but I think Pharaoh might have also played a brother.

Anyway. I was on the tech crew for this particular production, and my assignment ended up being Czarina of the Glitter Girls. Of course, that's not how it was assigned to me per se . . . the five of us chose our own titles and group name because they sounded fun. Put prosaically we spent the show at the very top of the auditorium - the precarious position quite a long ways up . . . at least 100 feet, maybe more . . . sitting on metal grating amid tops of the pulley systems for the curtains and flying sets and such. And we dropped sparkly confetti on the stage at a few points in the production.

It was a unique perspective to watch the show from - the tops of their heads. Very interesting. We had fun with it. And while we mostly did watch quietly, it was also quite unique the way we could chat pretty much all we wanted to as long as we didn't miss our cues, which were kind of hard to miss.

Those of you familiar with Joseph will no doubt recall that in the song "Grovel, Grovel" there is a line ("jail us and beat us we should be blamed") where the guys who sing bass hit a pretty low note. And since every girl involved in the show had a healthy appreciation for a guy who can sing you could almost feel the inaudible sigh from all of us every time that particular line was sung. In fact the girl in charge of the volume for the mikes worn by cast members would nudge up the volume on the two guys singing bass just for that note. We all appreciated it. :-)

Now one of these bass-singing guys was a very cute senior whom quite a few of us girls had a crush on. He, and the rest of the boys playing Joseph's brothers, sang that song on their knees, occasionally bowing down to, you know, grovel, before Pharaoh. Take a moment to remind yourself of where we Glitter Girls were watching the show from. Yeah. :-) Suffice it to say that we always paid attention to this part of the show. And some of those guys had really cute butts. And we'd get all giggly enjoying ourselves as we watched.

So finally closing night came and somehow one of us had what we all thought to be a brilliant idea - why not take a picture of our view of "Grovel, Grovel" just for fun? The stage was well lit at that point in the show, so surely we wouldn't have to worry about the flash. So my best friend Kim brought a disposable camera closing night and while we took other pictures, that was the one it was there for. My spot happened to be directly above our groveling bass-boy (not deliberate, I swear! We didn't know much about the staging when we decided where we would be, we just spread out to cover the entire stage.) so Kim handed me the camera and at the appropriate time I pointed it straight down and snapped.

The stage was well lit, but we forgot to account for the several dozen or more feet of pitch blackness between where we were and the bright lights of the stage. *FLASH!* went the camera, and we found ourselves blinded for what felt like forever. We were a little panicked, certain everyone had seen that flash of light and that we would get in sooooooooooo much trouble at the end of the show. Thankfully (and quite logically, thinking back on it now) we found out later that no one saw a thing. Which is really great considering I was so surprised by the flash that I nearly dropped the camera. That might have been . . . well . . . maybe . . . slightly noticeable. You know, this sudden, random object plummeting from nowhere and shattering on the stage. Or potentially killing somebody as it hit their head. We were melodramatic in envisioning what might have almost possibly happened.

But the show went on and sadly ended just a little later. It's always a little heartbreaking to have a show end . . . they're SO much fun while they last. (side note: the Old Barn community theatre is doing Into the Woods this summer . . . and I found out about auditions this week . . . the day AFTER they took place. GAH!!!) For curtain call we used up the extra confetti we had - and there was a lot more than we'd been expecting because while we had decided to save some specifically for the closing curtain, we hadn't exactly used it sparingly during the other performances. But there was tons left over. So much so that while we started with a small trickle of glitter and as more and more people took their bows we shook it out faster, and by the time the cast got to the end of the whole bowing thing they told us later that they couldn't even see the audience the confetti was so thick. That was kind of awesome.

Life went on, a little bit empty for a while as we all looked for things to fill the time that Joseph had been taking up. Kim got the pictures back, and in one you could kind-of-sort-of-almost make out a couple of rear ends. Vaguely. A little. To this day "grovel, grovel *FLASH*" is a joke we'll occasionally bring up to each other. Good times. I'm one of the lucky ones in the fact that high school was mostly a good time for me, mostly pleasant memories. Talk about living those songs again - I'd go back for a few weeks to live this show again. It was pretty awesome.

P. ost S. cript
In honor of two years ago yesterday, when I had Luke convinced for about 15 minutes that not only was he giving a speech at our reception, but that he had already agreed to do it and had apparently forgotten, behold: something that made us both laugh yesterday.


  1. Okay, you took about seven thousand years to get to the point of that, but I seriously haven't thought of that for SO LONG! And it was pretty funny. :)

  2. Oh, I don't care if she took seven thousand year--high school theatre memories are fun. No matter what show you're remembering. I loved this post. (And I'm just now getting to it on my feed, so bear with me as you read belated comments from me.)