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My most challenging show

All shows are a challenge. Time, Budget, and Personnel are always the top three. I once built a $1000 Tosca with 3 sets, by myself, in 12 days that also had to tour. By far, budget is the greatest challenge. Money can't buy you love but it can buy you a design and technical solutions for your show. Most of the theatres and universities I've worked for simply dust off last years budgets and calendar. Many have been doing so for several years. 2x4 cost more this year than 10 years ago. I'm usually given a bottom line and a deadline. I am rarely asked how much will this cost, how long will it take, and how many people will I need. However, when given a design I can usually 'stock estimate' materials cost. If we actually have stock to work with, we can subtract that from the construction cost and put the money to decor, things the audience will actually see.

Tosca (set during the Allied liberation of Rome in WWII)

For the purpose of this assignment, I'm going to pick Hamlet, March 2005 while I was Technical Director at Mill Mountain Theatre. 
Directed by: Jere Hodgin
Set Design by Bob Croghan
Costume Design by Jimmy Ward
Lighting Design by Genny Wynn



Why this show? 
MMT had a small crew, over hire, multiple stages, modest budgets, and the show required several technical challenges.

Challenges:
#1 Bob does not draft and Bob (by his own claim) is too old to be up ladders painting scenery.
#2 Quick Build Schedule
#3 Budget, Do more with less. The theatre is facing financial difficulty (closed it's doors soon after).
#4 Shop Crew= Technical Director, Shop Foreman, Master Carpenter, and 2 part time interns split between 3 productions at once.
#5 Static Scenery, Flown Units (straight and articulated), Tracked Units, and a Stage Elevator (Ghost, Grave, and it fogged)
#6 Scrap lumber engineering
#7 Scenic Texture, (something rotten in Denmark is literally rotting the paint off the walls)