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Lights! Camera! Phone!

IMG_7941No, we are not filming the current production of LEND ME A TENOR on our cellphones, but it does give me the opportunity to talk about… props. The ones at the theatre, that is!

Yes, the prop room has spilled over into the surrounding area of the basement and other closet storage areas as we accumulate those items that we just might use someday. And, some of the best of them are: lights, cameras, and phones. Ever think about how the style of a lampshade immediately identifies the era in which the play was set? You’re not going to see a lava lamp in our elegant 1934 Cleveland hotel suite. And, my how cameras and phones have changed over the years… in fact, they are now one device.

I know what you’re thinking… “Great! I can give them Mom’s china, Dad’s old ties, Uncle Ed’s army uniform, along with all the other stuff in the attic!” Whoa there, Nellie. The prop room at QCT is not a charity case. Nor is it the dumping off spot for all things that don’t work/fit anymore. Our staff and volunteers are eager to accept unique items that evoke a bygone era, but not that Corning Ware dish with a chip in the lid.

And, some of the things from that bygone era just don’t “fit” properly into context. Perhaps it needs to be a certain color. Perhaps it has to have “working” parts. Perhaps it is too small for the evolution of man into an average 5’9”, 180 lb. actor. Getting up off a chair that is only 12 inches from the floor can be difficult – especially in the middle of a scene! When that is the case, we use the older item as a pattern to fabricate something that does work for today’s cast.

If you have something that you would like to share with the theatre, put it in the proper light, snap a picture with the camera on your phone and email it to tech@1qct.org. Technical Director Paul Denckla and the props volunteers would be happy to look at it to see if we can use it in an upcoming production.

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