The birds are coming: 11/08/2013

The birds are coming: 11/08/2013

Our Creative Producer, Katy Weir spend a weekend up in Teesside getting pre-production moving…

“After a week of teaching 5-13yr old’s Shakespeare (Finishing with a 30 min production of Twelfth Night that sort of made sense) I made my way to Kings Cross to catch the 7:30pm to Darlington. Slumped against a wall surrounded by bags the littlest hobo was back on the road. I was mostly concerned that the train went to Edinburgh and I do have a reputation for ending up in Edinburgh when that is NOT where I want to be. Luckily Scott (our Director) and Rhea (then woman behind the man, who really makes everything work) were on hand to make sure that did not happen.

Arriving at Darlington around ten I was it can be said a little grumpy. I was greeted with the news that we were doing costume and make up for tomorrow’s trailer (I was playing Debbie) and had to be in Stockton for 8:30am to meet with Andy Berriman of Night Thief Films who was shooting our upcoming trailer.

Once I had got over my little strop that I was tired and had a turkey wrap I was good to go. I joke, no time for diva strops, I tried on an array of costume sourced by our style advisor Rhea, and I transformed into a teenage girl with a penchant for bright colours and jewellery. I also learnt a few useful fashion tips on the way, including how to make the offending items that give away I am not a teenager that little bit smaller! Magic!

So, after a good nights sleep and a 7am wake-up call from the three lovely children in the house (they must be lovely as I have no objection to them jumping on me and doing cockerel impressions at this early hour!) I got up and was ready to go. We stopped for essentials (bananas, chocolate, water, and Diet Coke).

We arrived at Arc, Stockton to pick up one of our actors, Luke Macgregor, at 8:45am. Scott and I have a quick discussion that time keeping is not one of our key skills and we maybe need to work on that, I blame him, and we move on.

Scott, Luke, and I go on a hunt for Andy who is already out and about with his camera filming dead pigeons and stuff. Brave! We drive to the location and all meet up there. It’s a really interested spot Andy and Scott have found and within a few minutes we are asked about what we are making as it is obvious there is more of a story to the 2 houses still standing on this estate than meets the eye. A lady walking her dog fills us in on the developers feud and the campaign to get these two houses knocked down to try and regenerate the area. Satisfied we had nothing to with it. She gave us a smile and walked on. I do think there is a film to be made somewhere on that estate.

We emptied the car, Scott had done well, dressing table, check, mirror, check, bird cage, check, chocolate, check and we got started. The first shot of the day is a scene with Joe coming home to see Debbie and so I sat at the dressing table and awaited my instructions. After a brief discussion about make-up we realised it was the blind leading the blind and decide to keep it simple. My job this morning is to make myself look like a mynah bird by applying blue eye-shadow on my eyes. I won’t give the game away regarding what else happens. You will just have to come and see the show.

At 10am our third actor is called, Stan Hodgson, who again is forced to have fruit, chocolate and water before we’ve even said hello properly.

We go to two more locations making sure we don’t miss the train coming in. I didn’t even know Stockton had a train station so this attention to detail was impressive to me. Finally, we went to do some filming in a tunnel back on the estate where we first started and meet some very interesting characters, who it can be fair to say could have a place in our play.

All done in four hours, we thanked all involved and tried to send them off with more bananas,water, chocolate. I think we may actually be creative feeders! On our return back to base we had some more good news. A large brown envelope from the Arts Council says yes to supporting our production! Two grants in a year, a great start to developing the theatre company we hope to achieve.

All in all a successful day and what also makes me happy running my own company is working with such nice people. I think in daily life being nice is underrated and often in the arts people think they must forego general niceness, good manners, for talent. I feel that as OddManOut begin to develop creative relationships you can find plenty of people with both :-)

Can’t wait to see the finished product!

Odd Man Out Theatre

Night Thief Films