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September 09, 2011


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The Missing Steps
After one month of deserved superlatives about the Theatreworks production of Patrick Barlow’s “The 39 Steps” and the success of the director and the actors….
In the Gazette review and interviews with the director we didn’t hear a single word or name about the costumes, scenography, lighting design, sound design, props or production management.
In theatre as a collective art form, it is a moral crime to fail to mention the highly professional and successful hard work of the designers and technicians, real people with skill, talent, dignity and pride in their dedication to THEATRE. Trust me, they deserve to be appreciated … they deserve to hear their names. They are not doing this for the miserable money they receive but for their “unfortunate”
Jane Spencer’s lighting design makes a lot of atmosphere in a difficult space.
The colorful sound design of Breton Parks Christopherson is an irreplaceable component of the success of the show.
As a professional European Scenographer-Set/Costume/Lighting Designer and Director, I am very pleased with the accomplishment of the Set Designer, Roy Ballard. This is the most successful theatrical balcony I have ever seen in a Theatreworks production. The scale and proportion in the space are exactly right!
I am professionally impressed (and a little bit jealous ☺)
with the great success of the costumes of Jan Avramov and her crew. After comparison with the Broadway, Denver Center and other productions I can honestly say Ms. Avramov is a highly talented Professional.
From the many good costumes:
-the simplicity of the old men, achieved with only a few successfully chosen theatrical pieces, serves to make the scene and the actors colorful and memorable…
-the dress ensemble that brilliantly captures the character of Pamela…
-in comparison with other productions, given the specifics of the actor’s body, the great execution, the perfect/happy choice of stripes on the vest under the black tailcoat with the whiteness of the actor’s face, serve as a “theatrical skin” for the most successful scenes in the show, making THE best MR. MEMORY character/costume !!! Period.
I do understand the difficulty for one critic to equally and professionally know about Visual Art, Music, Theatre, Directing, Acting, Dramaturgy, Scenography – Set/Costume Design, Lighting Design, Sound Design…..
But my friendly advice is:
-Never forget that in team work, there are always real people with real feelings and real pride…. who deserve moral appreciation for their work.
-Always ask for the opinion of professionals (like me,for example :) who understand the specifics and creative components of the process….
-We must respect them to avoid falling on the Missing Steps!
Ars Longa – Vita Brevis!
Life is Short, ART (truly good ART) is FOREVER!
Encho Avramov

BTW , Jan is my lovely wife and even she has ”neglected” her family working 16 hours per day on this show … We still LOVE HER A LOT !

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