Sep 9, 2011

Hello Lexington!

I am Lacey Ruminer, the new Arts Admin Intern at Lexington Children's Theatre. I graduated in May from Arkansas Tech University with a BA in Journalism with an emphasis in Public Relations. I am very excited to be in Lexington and working for LCT.

I have just about survived my first 2 weeks here at LCT! I have to admit that the first couple days were a little overwhelming. Standing in the Box Office on Monday morning watching the other Arts Admin Intern, Carrie, answer phones, send invoices, work on a magazine ad, and finish up a radio spot while trying to talk me through things was a little overwhelming. I caught myself wondering what I had gotten into. Thankfully those thoughts quickly started to fade and things are making a lot more sense. That is greatly due to the amazing staff here at LCT. Everyone has been so nice and welcoming. They understand that it might be a little overwhelming at first and reassured me that I didn't have to pick it all up in a day or two, which I don't think is humanly possible. 

I think one of the highlights of the first week was actually getting to sit in on one of the rehearsals of Old Jake’s Skirts, which is one of the shows that will be touring around to different schools this fall. Students came over from a school across the street to see the show and give the actors a chance to perform in front of an audience. The show is adorable and getting to hear the kids’ reactions was so great. It is amazing to see how even small jokes can get the kids rolling with laughter. Nothing can brighten your day better than the sound of lots of children laughing.

I want to say again how welcoming everyone has been. This is the farthest I have ever been from my home of Fort Smith, Ark, so I was a little worried about moving to a place where I knew absolutely no one. Those fears didn't last long though after meeting the other interns. As I was moving in and getting settled, random interns popped in to say hello and invite to me to the weekly Sunday potluck. I think I was invited to the potluck at least 5 times by different people. I guess the good thing about the way our jobs run is that at some point everyone was the new person and so they know what it feels like.

So as I said before, I have survived the first couple weeks and I am so excited to see what is to come! We have a great season and I am very happy to get to be a part of it!

Arts Admin Intern

Aug 26, 2011

So long, farewell...

Our guest blogger today is Meghan Fleming.  Over the last year she has worked as one part of the two person intern team that it takes to simultaneously run the box office, create marketing materials, write press releases, book school shows, and act as an information hub for the theatre.   Today she sends us a fond farewell as she leaves LCT for new adventures:

Today is my last day as an intern here at LCT.  Wow, that’s really weird to say.  I honestly can’t image leaving this place and will miss it more that I can express in a single entry.  It hasn't really sunk in yet.  But I know on Monday, when I’m back in Georgia unpacking all my stuff and not sitting in the Box Office feverishly researching graphic design ideas, selling tickets for school shows, or anxiously awaiting the amazingly fun Arts Admin meeting at 3:30…it’ll hit me.  I’m not in Lexington anymore.  I’m not working with the outstanding, creative, and supportive staff of LCT.  I’m not going to get to hear all the children exclaim with such excitement about getting to come to the theatre, and tell us afterwards simply “That was a good show”.  After this realization there’s a good chance that I’ll cry.  But since I’m known for wearing my emotions on my sleeve, this won’t really surprise anyone who’s gotten to know me over the last year. 

I could look back and tell you about how I discovered the internship, or even tell a few funny stories during my time here like Ms. Lucy did a few weeks ago.  But I don’t think I could really do this experience any justice in that way.  How I got here isn’t so terribly interesting.  And what I’m leaving with is a bit too personal and close to my heart for me to share in this entry.  I think the best thing that I can say is simply “Thank you.”

Thank you for believing that I was the right person for this position.  Thank you for letting me live in this amazing city for a year.  Thank you for helping me to stumble through the growing pains of post-college life with a little dignity and grace still intact.  Thank you for surrounding me with some of the most talented and innovative people I’ve ever met.   Thank you for pushing me when I was hesitant, giving me a hug after a long day, kicking my butt when it needed kicking,  and making me laugh when I needed it most.  Thank you for letting me explore, create, imagine, and experiment.  Thank you for restoring my curiosity in the world around me.  Thank you for just being the amazing people and company that you are.  And finally…thank you for letting me be a part of it, even if just for a little while.  I know that all of the things I have learned here will help me continue into the next part of my journey wherever it will take me.  Walt Disney said it best:

I will miss you all and hope to see you soon!

Meghan Fleming
(Former) Arts Administration Intern

Aug 15, 2011

"DURING the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year..."

This morning as I left for the theatre, a familiar cool met me. The crisp in the air was a solid reminder that wish as I might, the summer season will soon draw to a close. Grade school students have returned to their classrooms, teachers have begun making plans for their schoolyear, and LCT welcomes a host of new intern arrivals as we prepare for the upcoming season. As much as I will miss the warm, lackadaisical days of summer bliss, I cannot hide my excitement for the fall.

Today, our tour actors arrived. At 9am, we were sitting around the board room listening to presentations from the designers for "Old Jake's Skirts" and "Tales of Edgar Allan Poe." As I have listened to these ideas and concepts start to come together, I grow increasingly more excited to see the final product-- which is saying something, because I'd never read "Old Jake's Skirts", and Poe never really fascinated me.

But to see how the costume designers are literally bringing Old Jake and Shoestring (his trust hounddog) to life is truly breathtaking. And then the set and props-- the beautiful woodstains and the intricacies of each prop. You have to see them to appreciate the time and effort and thought and inspiration that has gone into each and every piece. They're wonderful. It's such a heartwarming story. See the photo of Shoestring below.

And Poe. There really aren't words. Miss Vivian is bringing to life 3 of Edgar Allan Poe's most well-known stories, all the while interjecting moments from Poe's life and snippets from his other stories and poems. She has woven them together so wonderfully, and our designers have risen above and beyond the challenges set before them. Joscelyne described her costuming as "neo-gothic with a hat tip to the victorian era"-- and they are going to look so incredible! The set design manages to incorporate each of the three tales, while also providing a modernity to which audience members can relate. I literally got chills of anticipation thinking about how spine-tingling this production is going to be.

It's going to be a magical season here at Lexington Children's Theatre. While I am saddened to bid adieu to the warm weather and summer friends, I cannot deny that I am excessively enthused for the wonders this season will bring. Purchase your tickets soon -- this is going to be one wild, crazy, wonderful ride.

Winding rills and tingling chills,

Arts Administration Intern

Aug 4, 2011

"Ms Lucy, your clowns are here."

           Tomorrow is the last day of Summer Theatre School 2011.  While we are all exhausted from the intense (yes, just like camping) nine full weeks of managing and teaching upwards of seven classes each week, and I’m personally pumped for the annual Shakespeare Presents Series sharing, the closing of the summer is certainly bittersweet. I’ve enjoyed working with 11 Teaching Artists from all of the country and students who arrive so excited for the day they barely remember to say goodbye to their parents and jump at the opportunity to clean the lunch room. (True story.)  Also, I have a unique position as Lead Teaching Artist/Theatre School Administrator which means some weeks I spend teaching and others I’m in the office. 

            Carrie asked me to write a blog giving an overview of the summer.  I could write for days and never be able to capture the essence of Summer Theatre School.  I’m not sure how to describe the journey of exploring your favorite book as a character living in that world.  So, I’m just going to choose a few moments that really stand out to me from this summer. 

            I taught Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters the first week of classes.  Most of the students in our class did not know each other at the beginning of the week and my co-teachers and I noticed a divide that formed any time the students chose how to group themselves.  We made a conscious effort in our planning during the week to focus on community building activities and on Friday at lunch I looked over and saw a very large group of students eating sitting on the floor.  They had chosen to sit on the floor so the entire class could sit together.  It may seem like a small thing, but rarely in a week long class does a teacher (at least in my experience) see the long term effects of their work.

            During Princess Academy, the teachers asked if we were interested in being involved in teaching their class the Maypole Dance.  And just for fun we decided we should teach in role – meaning Amie and I found delightful…outfits (I’m not sure what to call those costumes…I remember them being very colorful) and barged into a Maypole Dancing Lesson demanding in made up accents they perform for us because we were Maypole Dancing Experts.  After getting very upset that they did not have a Maypole we charged the class with decorating the ribbons and pole and left.  Soon we returned, and with a lot of hot glue, created a Maypole and began teaching.  There’s really no fancy or exciting ending to this story – it was just a super fun afternoon running around gathering supplies and playing/working with a fun class.  Oh, and the dance was lovely in their sharing.    

            A few days ago, I was sitting at my desk and my phone rings.  This in itself is not unusual.  I answer. This is the response from Carrie, “Ms. Lucy, your clowns are here”.  Having gotten most of my giggles out as a ran down the stairs, I greeted the two clowns from Barnum & Bailey who came and taught a workshop for four of our classes.  They did a demonstration of different types of clowning makeup and after, for a little fun, taught a spitting lesson.  The Learning Stage was full of laughter as we watched the stage (and some people sitting on the front row) fill with water sprayed out of our friends’ mouths.  Instead of a cherry on top of this sundae, each person got their very own Barnum & Bailey clown nose.       

            In short, this summer has been full of surprises, meeting and becoming friends with some of the best people and young people I know, coffee, giggles, strange noises coming from the hall, pizza, long hard hours, crafts, mosaic-ing, oh yeah, and fun. 

--Lucy Lynn

Jul 21, 2011

It's the day of the show, y'all!

Annie opens TONIGHT!

I sat in on the invitational dress rehearsal last night, and what a fun show it is going to be! The sets are incredible (a HUGE thanks to the set crew for all of the long hours they put in, including my roommate, Vanessa!), the costumes are gorgeous (Eric and the costume shop did an amazing job), and the cast is hilarious. Everyone who stepped on that stage brought a smile to my face, from Mr. Warbucks singing "I Don't Need Anything But You" to the Orphans' rendition of "Hard Knock Life" to the Cabinet's rousing chorus of "Tomorrow." This truly is not a show to miss.

This is the first time I've manned a box office for a show of this size, and what a day it has been. Phones ringing off the hook all. day. long. It is so rewarding to hear the excitement in everyone's voices as they call to purchase tickets-- all of the hard work everyone has put in over the last two months is finally coming to fruition. Again, a massive thank-you to everyone who has helped in any capacity over the course of putting this show up.

Tickets are still available for all other performance of Annie (Friday at 7:30, Saturday at 2 and 7:30, and Sunday at 2 and 6) but purchase yours now, as they're selling like hotcakes! (Although it might be more appropriate to say they are selling like popsicles, thanks to the heat this week... haha) Go online, call the Box Office, or come by and see us to get your tickets now!

Easy Street and Dancing Feet,

Arts Administration Intern

Jul 14, 2011

Harry Potter Happiness!

Is anyone else as stoked about the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows pt 2 as I am??? Ok, I know that my Box-Office coworker Meghan is. I brought our Harry Potter battling wands to work today, and she was stoked.

We think everyone at the theatre is (not so) silently celebrating with us-- we have 2 Harry Potter-themed summer classes going on this week. Earlier, "Harry Potter and the Wand of Destruction" crept through the lobby. When Meghan discovered them, they successfully wiped her memory with a rousing, "Obliviate!" She was able to sneak up on them later to catch some photos of their progress this week. Enjoy!

Jul 8, 2011

If I Ran the Circus

Across the street in the auditorium of St. Peter and Paul, a group of rowdy 6- and 7-yr-olds are letting their friends and family know exactly how things would be if they ran the circus. To be quite honest, many days it feels like we're running our own circus here. We currently have a host of Alexanders (who suffered a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad camping trip this morning), some prancing Fancy Nancy's, rambunctious circus ringleaders, twisted Fairy Tales, and a clan of creatures from the Spiderwick Estate crawling through our building.

In addition to my administrative duties in the box office, I have the privilege to frequent all of the other departments running around in this circus. This week we celebrated with the costume crew when our dress forms finally arrived. (Thank you Beaux Arts Ball!) The Annie cast braved a torrential downpour last night to come in for rehearsal. Thanks to our recent $2.5 million endowment from the Little Foundation, meetings are taking place regarding the (permanent!) future of our Shooting Stars Youtheatre satellite program. And the ringleaders across the street were visited by the infamous Miss Viola Swamp, who read "Miss Nelson is Missing" and taught them the benefits of being a well-behaved class. (It's a shame I missed seeing her. She visited their class at the exact same time I was out of the office. Strange...)

It was another jam-packed week here at the theatre (literally, thanks to the holiday weekend), and we're already gearing up for another fun-filled adventure next week. Enjoy some photos from the week!

Big tops and camping flops,

Arts Administration Intern

 Our Fancy Nancy's prepare for their sharing!

Our ringleaders anxiously await the start of the circus!