Tech week. It’s sort of like trying to hit a homerun with a tennis racket. This tech week is especially challenging because the techies chose the play, Cats from Mars. Broken props and hyper-caffeinated techies are only some of the problems. The other human factors in this play, called actors, introduce chaos: the newbie breaks the laser gun (affectionately named Katniss), the prima donna badmouths the costumes, and the alpha male lead destroys the fog machine in between spates of directing advice. Meanwhile, the director desperately tries to hold the production together while desperately, desperately wishing for a baseball bat. We directors ask it every time: Is there any hope for this show? About 35-40 minutes.
Jim and Jane Jeffries talk about
Q: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS PLAY?
A: Our inspiration was three high school boys who managed to create magic for our shows with, quite literally, no budget. I mean, when one can build a bubble machine from old pieces of a hard-drive, another can re-route the sound system in the building, and another can build a confetti cannon, you know that they can do wonders. And, we’re pretty sure they all owned fog machines of their own.
Q: WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PART OR LINE IN THE PLAY? WHY?
A: That Jeremy named his laser gun. It reflects the love that techies have for the work that they do.
Q: TELL US MORE ABOUT THE CHARACTERS.
A: While all of our actors have been wonderfully unique through the years, certain tendencies keep popping up in every show. We think directors will recognize many of these characters.
Q: WHAT DID YOU TRY TO ACHIEVE WITH THIS PLAY?
A: Well, every director has experienced the madness of tech week, but in spite of the struggles, we also wanted to show the hard work that our tech crews are putting in—and to show that there still manages to be good things going on behind the scenes whether we see it or not.
Q: DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE TO ADD?
A: Directors, shower your techies with love and/or gifts. Cases of Mountain Dew worked for us, but every techie has her or his own love language. Roses. Chocolates. Leopard print gaff tape. Whatever it is, do something special for your tech crew.