thank you bec. i learned last night the sweater-vest is from the CAST costume archive and was worn by our (female) board president in an all-girl production they did of 'the odd couple' a few years ago. which makes it even funnier. i love the tassel. the guy wearing it is actually a shakesperian actor, and has never done comedy or especially farce before, which makes him a perfect 'straight man' for a lot of laughs. he's also discovered how funny he can be, much to his surprise. also incidentally, and much to my delight, he is cast interacially with the female lead, which is pretty damn awesome. i love our director. i am also terrified of her.
the fireplace mantle and hearth are actually painted by two fifteen-year-olds who are members of CAST's kid training camp thing they call 'CAST kidz.' once a week they meet to learn to sing and tapdance and such and are paraded out for fundraisers, festivals, commercials, and any other excuse we can find to exploit our talented lil children for community-building purposes. kim has those kids whipped into shape, too; she marches them through events in single file like a little performing army, and has never lost one of them or suffered any disaster more major than someone losing their white gloves. one of them drew a portrait of martin luther king recently for mlk day which they put on the programs, and a portrait of michael jackson which won her some sort of award at her school. since they are showing an interest in art, and since i am the in-house designer, and since teaching brings more grant money, they asked me to do a workshop with the two oldest kids (which were the ones who showed interest) and teach them faux finishes, to the extent we were using them in this particular show. fine with me, less for me to paint. the largest challenge i faced, since as it happens i am a pretty good teacher, was not swearing, otherwise, i get along fine with teenagers cause im way cool and have a bike and tattoos and we get to listen to cool music, so they were not attitude-y and it wasn't as stressful as i'd thought it might be. heh. and the little ones from the troupe tend to follow me around when i'm doing stuff (like setting up their microphones) to ask why i am doing it. i am not a kid person so it weirds me out that the thirteen-inch high ones take an interest in me, but i chalk it up to my looking like a coloring book.
it also amuses those who know me no end that i am now teaching children. anyway, if this were not a farce, i'd have dulled down the fireplace stones (and distressed a lot of that unrelieved green) with a hudson sprayer (a pump paint sprayer, people also use them for yardwork) in a black layer and a dark gray layer so they wouldn't pop so much, but this is kind of a surreal sort of social experiment-type play, with the sort of comedy that couldn't happen in real life and so on, so i tried to keep the set both cartoonish but believable. that's why the balcony is sort of unfinished-looking and the window is so cheesy with the fake trees (it's supposed to be the second story of a converted apartment house. sweater-vest guy is an architect).
here are the cast kidz. the two tallest ones are angelica and
, the two who helped with the painting.