submitted by Monica Cleland

Rehearsals are underway three times a week for Andrew Bergman’s play “Social Security”. It is a wonderful comedy directed by Diane Miller, brought to the Urbandale Art Centre stage at the end of October.

As director, Diane has had the task of choosing the cast at audition, mapping out the blocking of the play (where the actors will be on stage), and deciding on the main goals of each of the characters. She also decided upon the set design and lighting/sound effects required, and has had final say on the costumes, and many other details required to bring this play to the stage.

Our producer, Barb McDerby, was instrumental in filling the rest of the positions required to get a play in motion. There are several very reliable people in our organization that we call upon time and again, because they do such a great job.

For instance, our set builder, Derek VanDer Meer. Whenever a box set needs building, or even a complicated set piece, who we call? Derek!

All the graphics and art work that you see on our posters or website, are provided by Caroline Marshall. The photographs for the cast/crew are done by John Wilberforce, who manages to bring out the absolute best in all of us.

Lighting and sound is a big part of any play. It can set the mood, and create the tension required for a scene. Unfortunately, it is only noticed if something goes wrong. Fortunately for our operator, Terry Watkiss, that doesn’t happen very often.

Every set needs “dressing”. Finding all the furniture, and the bits and pieces that accessorize from paint to trim, are what Leah Doiron does best. It truly is an art form in itself, and she makes it look effortless.

Hand props need to be found and kept track of back stage for the actor to either bring on stage (purse); or put on his person (handkerchief). Keeping track of these many items for this play, are Debbie MacGillivray and Angela Kennedy.

Costumes need to be procured from our own stash, sewn, sourced and/or altered for each performance. Helen Visbach is our wardrobe wizard on an ongoing basis.

Barb McDerby is doing double duty this year, as she is also our long standing go-to for admission tickets. She interfaces with all the businesses that are kind enough to pre-sell our tickets, and also handles our ticket reservations.

The prompter can save an actor when they “dry up” or forget a line on stage. There is no scarier moment than this. The actors will be able to thank Jennifer Gow for saving them this time around.

Actors sometimes need help with quick changes backstage. Helen McGregor is filling the position of Dresser for this production.

Front of House is a big job, which entails bringing in people to be in charge of taking in/selling admission tickets; passing out programs; selling 50/50 tickets, and also selling water at intermission. Ellen Fawcett is Front of House for this production, and is currently getting all her helpers in line. Seven people are required for each performance night.

Lastly, there is myself, Monica Cleland, and I do publicity. Beside the 3-4 articles that I try to get in the local papers, I am in the process of updating the website, Also, I try and get the word out to other theatre groups, and as the date draws nearer, I try to contact radio, TV, other papers, and do an e-mail and facebook blitz.

Please save the date: Thursday, October 27 through to Sunday, October 30 at the Urbandale Arts Centre in the Municipal Centre. Thursday to Saturday performances will start at 7:30 pm with the Sunday matinee starting at 2 pm. Doors open 1/2 hour prior to show times. Tickets are $15 per person, and are available at B&H Grocer, Business Strategies and at the Municipal Centre.


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