Think Perry Mason, only without the miscreants.
Today's library gig (my summer show this year is called "Shimmer-Swimmers") was in an ancient, unrenovated courthouse in North Carolina. There was no sign outside to indicate this enormous dusty building in the little bitty town could possibly house a library, so it took asking someone using the post office across the street to find out where I should go, and how I might get inside.
I was, however, met by someone who put me in an elevator with buttons marked "jail" and "courtroom."
Yes, the show was in a courtroom just like the ones in black and white movies. Which meant that the audience was going to sit on wooden benches behind a dense wooden fence meant to separate the populace from the officials. My show this summer involves a shadow theater. How to enable folks to see?
I decided on a little table for my theater-suitcase which would then go atop one of those huge wooden barrister tables. A sturdy wooden chair would be my step up. Oh yes! My puppets would be seen! But, of course, I would have to stand on the table as well.
Bless the heart of the librarian, who took one look at my plan and suggested I add another table behind the first one, so that if I should inadvertently step backwards, I wouldn't--in front of all the innocent, unsuspecting children--catapult, screaming, to the ground mid-show.
As it was, I had to get up and down several times during the show since not all my stories use the puppet theater, and when I'm telling stories, I like to be as close to the audience as possible. But hey, as I said, my puppets were seen!
My only regret--it didn't occur to me to take photos with my cell phone till I'd already driven all the way home to Virginia. I can but swear on my honor to the truth of this story.
6 days ago