Thalian hall

Steven Ward Issue: Section:

Thalian Hall is a performing arts center built in 1858 by the same architect who designed the Ford Theatre in Washington,DC where Lincoln was assassinated.  Recently, I was asked by a friend to help with the reopening
gala to hopefully assist in bringing a sophisticated but hip edge to the gala festivities.  As Thalian is a historic site,  it became apparent that there would be many limitations to what we could do to the building
Visually.

As photography and film are two of my deepest passions...I set out to make a film that would be shown on the walls of the cast party that would channel the "behind the scenes" of a production opening night. A fashion
story set to movement.  Many times, I feel plays can be intimidating, so I hoped to capture a voyeuristic liaison between the audience and the cast. The idea was to capture the ghosts of the stage wings from 1858 until
2010...a backstage pass from past to present.

Although I have a good experience as a hairdresser to back up a project like this, I had never art directed anything of this nature before.  To say I became overwhelmed is an understatement.  However, I had a blast
making this film.  I asked a good friend Bo Webb to capture the moving images while Leslie Koehn shot the stills.  My partner and storyboard guy was a fellow hairdresser Jacob Sickles who is a stylist in my salon, and an amazing guy I might add.  Jacob was responsible for the editing of this project, and the savior of this project as I have limited Technological skills.

Overall, this project was a success, but since there was a $00.00 budget, and a substantial cast, we had to shoot this in one day.  Can you say naive?  Anyway, I had hoped to use each model, changing their looks to nod to the feeling of each decade while keeping a modern edge using modern clothing to tie the film together thematically.  As none of the cast were professional models/actors and no "real" director except me, It became very clear I was wearing too many hats as art director, hair stylist, stylist, and motivator.  Initially, we were trying to do too many looks and by midday I saw that we were getting nowhere fast.  After deciding to
not focus on the styles of the decades as much, and focus on getting something on film... we started to make some progress.  I think the beer helped also.

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