Between the Song and the Silence: A Bird's Eye View ...
It was daunting to approach the vast expanse of blank pages. I hate having to do things over as I often feel that my first iteration was the best one – and that any attempt to recreate it would result in a poor imitation of what I had done before.
I read and reread the Hemingway homily about his lost trunk of work, and decided I wasn’t going to try to redo sixty-odd sketches. I’d been there, done that!
So how else could I approach doing another storyboard for the performance if I wasn’t going to make a sketch for every action change?
Over time I’ve managed to amass an amazing number of Post-It notes, in a variety of colours. I use them to organize papers and essays, plan project timelines, make shopping lists, post notes to my partner on the fridge or mirror, and on the door for the postman and neighbours. They are a ubiquitous tool in our household.
So why not use them somehow for this? I had started taking photos with my phone to record what I was doing in my sketch books, in case they were ever stolen (or lost) again. Instead of recording sketches, I could just cut to the chase and use the photos to make a sort of stop-animation storyboard.
The stage at the Tieranatomische is within a round amphitheatre, and after ferreting through my paper drawer, I found some beautiful round paper - voilà, my stage!
So now all that was necessary was to make my cast of colourful Post-Its: blue for the audience, neon pink for my vocalists, neon orange for my birdwatchers, and neon chartreuse for my musicians. Yellow would be used for other information, such as titles or stage descriptions.
By turning them into .gifs, I’ve been able to get an even better sense of the flow of movement on the stage, and having just sent the .gifs off to some of my performers, they’ve indicated that they like they flexibility of working this way. On our next Skype in a couple of weeks, the plan is for each of us to have a version of my Post-It stage maquette, and use them as we begin to go through the staging.
A bird’s eye view, indeed!
Over time I've managed to amass an amazing number of Post-It Notes, in a variety of colours ...