Thursday, April 10, 2008

Question of the Day

Ask, and you shall receive. My brother responded to my request for suggestions for QotD’s with a great list, so I’ll be posting them every so often. Let’s start with this one.

What is the longest time you’ve ever stayed awake?

For me that would be in April 1973 when I was working as an assistant stage manager on a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the University of Miami (starring Gail Edwards as Titania and Ernie Sabella as Bottom, by the way). We closed the show on a Saturday night, then had to strike the set and immediately set up for a Sunday night performance of Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris that was being performed as an entry in the American College Theatre Festival.

I arrived at the Ring Theatre at 6 pm on Saturday for the performance of MSND, ran the show, struck the set (missed the cast party), and worked through the night getting rid of the elaborate scenery (the designer, the late David Trimble, had set the show in the Everglades and Vizcaya) and putting together the minimalist stage and lights needed for Brel. We took a break at around 8 the next morning for a quick trip home to wash up, grab some coffee, and then came back to focus the lights, run the tech rehearsal, and then run the show, which went on at 8 pm and ran until about 10:30. After the usual post-production madness of cleaning up the theatre and making sure everything was put away, I got back to my apartment around midnight Sunday and got about five hours of sleep before having to go back to the theatre for directing class on Monday morning. How many hours was that? I lost count.