Show will be a beauty

LETTER

The public needs to know the sort of costs involved in a huge once-a-year stage show like Beauty and the Beast. The price appears to be a beast, but the product is a beauty. Having joined backstage I am agape at the size, organisation and quality of the finished product. It opens on Wednesday, and by the time people read the review late on Thursday, they could well miss out on tickets for Friday and Saturday.

It’s a shame there are thousands who can’t afford it (something that a change of government will help, of course). In the meantime, we must appreciate the many less expensive local shows, how good they are, and how professional our amateur talent can be.

The cost of Musical Theatre Gisborne’s mighty production is many tens of thousands of dollars. Few realise how many. More than one is for royalties alone; then there is theatre hire, costume and scenery hire, light and sound equipment, and professional director, musical director and choreographer — each, judging by my past experience, giving hugely of their time in proportion to a bargain-basement fee.

Then there are the volunteers. Oh wow. Every night there are 97 names ticked off at the stage door—cast, orchestra and crew. In preceding months, culminating in a 60-hour week for many, there were building, painting, rigging, sewing and planning; not to mention administration and front of house.

The result: a display of excellent local talent, brilliantly set and staged, for children and adults alike. Be in to win.

Gavin Maclean

The public needs to know the sort of costs involved in a huge once-a-year stage show like Beauty and the Beast. The price appears to be a beast, but the product is a beauty. Having joined backstage I am agape at the size, organisation and quality of the finished product. It opens on Wednesday, and by the time people read the review late on Thursday, they could well miss out on tickets for Friday and Saturday.

It’s a shame there are thousands who can’t afford it (something that a change of government will help, of course). In the meantime, we must appreciate the many less expensive local shows, how good they are, and how professional our amateur talent can be.

The cost of Musical Theatre Gisborne’s mighty production is many tens of thousands of dollars. Few realise how many. More than one is for royalties alone; then there is theatre hire, costume and scenery hire, light and sound equipment, and professional director, musical director and choreographer — each, judging by my past experience, giving hugely of their time in proportion to a bargain-basement fee.

Then there are the volunteers. Oh wow. Every night there are 97 names ticked off at the stage door—cast, orchestra and crew. In preceding months, culminating in a 60-hour week for many, there were building, painting, rigging, sewing and planning; not to mention administration and front of house.

The result: a display of excellent local talent, brilliantly set and staged, for children and adults alike. Be in to win.

Gavin Maclean

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