The last few months were busy with Summer camps and preparation to this new school year. New projects, finishing old projects, adapting to changes:
- Carine has accepted a full time position at L'Etoile Immersion School
- Carole went back to France - She is in a Master program in Artistic direction in Poitiers
- Jane had her second child this Summer - Welcome Maceo! and continue to work with the Alliance Française as the Children Program Coordinator & Teacher
We started our Fall classes a month ago already and it is exciting to be able to be present in all the French Immersion programs of the Portland Area. It was wonderful seeing old faces and meeting new students and Families. We could not be everywhere without our new teachers! Their bio and pictures will be soon added to our website but if you sign up for our newsletter, we are sending it this week!
What took us so long to write a new blog entry and sending our newsletter!?
Updating our website and being on top of writing this blog and our monthly newsletter are often last on our to-do list. Some administrative tasks, class preparation and moving some projects forward (New Show, performing > Rehearsing, Francophonie Theatre Festival) have to come first because we value professionalism and the quality of our programs. We value our relationships to our students and Families and with every Schools and team we work with. We are making a difference and that is what's important to us. However, to continue, we need support and help. Money is great, we all know this but everything else is more valuable.
If you have experience, are interested or simply enjoy proofreading, writing, Social Networking management, talk to people about us, have a couple hours to spare this month or every month for projects, consider writing us a quick email :
"Hey, how can I help? I can help with ...."
That will help us continuing to concentrate on what matters : bringing theatre, French, entertainment, education to the community!
A couple weeks ago, Fabulations was happy to perform "Séraphine" for children and families of "Atlas Immersion Academy" and "La petite école/Le Monde" School.
A little more than 100 people attended and the show was followed by some delicious refreshments offered by the schools and Saint Cupcake.
The performance went well but to us it was quite different from our last performance back in March. Here are some insights / behind the scene information.
We spent less time rehearsing in our basement than in March because the whole show was relatively fresh in our mind and body. We felt more confident with the text, the play, the timing.
However, it all changed as soon as we realized that we could not set-up our set as usual. On Friday morning, less than a week before the show, we came to Atlas to assess how much different it was going to be and talked about options and what it was going to take. Some purchases were made over the weekend to allow some changes to the set.
Part of me was actually excited about the challenge because that is part of what we do, we come to schools and do whatever it takes to make it work. So Monday morning was spent setting up the new adapted set. We then realized that we needed another few hours on Wednesday to finish a few things that were not working and also have a rehearsal, at least "une allemande" (when you go through the whole show but not in real time necessarily, just doing movements and text to know where you have to go, when, etc...) because we had to adapt the way we were performing too!
I was pretty happy with the set, it was different but quite "sleek," and after some more rehearsing we felt pretty good and were ready for the show the day after.
THE BIG DAY
Because all props and the set were already on location, set up was quick, we had time to relax and warm up.
With children in the audience, you never know what the reactions are going to be like. When performing for children, especially young children, you have to expect interactions, and we are actually looking for them, instigating them sometimes.
Our last two performances of the same show were very different in that matter. The March one for example was pretty quiet, children and parents did not interact too much, maybe because it was a smaller audience and it was more intimate. The most reactions we had was during the lion scene because it gets a little scary and funny at the same time.
During our last performance, we had all sorts of reactions. That often made us have to adapt the text or deal with mistakes we were more likely to make. One of the main thing that happens is that you can't ignore for too long that a child is showing you where a puppet went or appeared. If they also scream the name of what's appearing behind you, it's hard to pretend you are not seeing it or that you did not hear. It's not TV! The best is that kids do it in French, because why would they warn in English the main character who speaks French?!
That's what I love about live performance and why I was never interested in working in movies or television: to experience first hand the reactions of the audience and feed from it.