Alison Bell-Allen - Queen of the Whole Universe

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[00:00:00] This podcast is funded through a generous grant from the gate Auckland Business Association, charitable trust, and brought to you by the queen of the whole universe Charitable Trust and pride in [00:00:13] For me, apart from the obvious thing, and the stage managing, etc, it is the joy of being with a group of people who are themselves. There's no pretense. [00:00:26] no pretense, not so many people who live under a shadow of pretense, and it shouldn't be necessary in this day and age. [00:00:34] So for you, is it more, it's more than just the performance on the night, it's a wider thing [00:00:42] is it's the whole rehearsal thing. And it's also I must be one of the oldest stage managers and Chris and [00:00:49] certainly, I would think in New Zealand, and having done it professionally, it's a way of keeping my hand and my adrenaline goes sky high, no matter how tired I feel, or anything like that, it just sky sky high. And I love it. I love stage managing. And I love anything to do with theatre. And that there's that wonderful sense of rehearsal that I love that everybody's joyous. [00:01:13] Tommy, what is a stage manager? What What does a stage manager do? [00:01:17] Well, my role was in the queen of whole universe is not full stage manager I call show. So I go to rehearsals to listen to the music to see what's happening, and to [00:01:30] call the cues, [00:01:33] be the lighting, sound, [00:01:37] spotlights, and flies, whatever. So you need to know the show fairly well. And either by sound and or by visual, you know, [00:01:49] mostly with me with the first pieces, it's a digital thing, I can't become involved in any shape or form, I feel emotionally with the actual performance on the nights. Because otherwise you lose where you are. I only hear it as a series of the only way I can describe it as a series of digits, which sounds weird. And following every letter and every note. And I've got huge notes on my script. And I've got huge reminders and stuff like that I use a lot of colored pins on it. But that's markers. But that's not necessarily other people's way of doing things. That's how I did. [00:02:30] I'd like to go into a wee bit more depth in terms of the process of actually being a stage manager on something that's large. But first, I'm just wondering, how did you get involved in the queen of the whole universe? [00:02:41] Well, originally having worked at the edge, originally fast, I was still there and the capacity of an event coordinator, I was asked if I'd like to actually be in the show representing artists center. And I felt strange about that. Because all my theatrical work has been done. Not for a company such as the artist center. And I didn't feel right doing it for them. I wanted if I was going to be involved, it had to be for me. [00:03:12] If you understand that, that sounds terribly shell for selfish, but it had to be on my terms, not not what they wanted me to be. And, and I went along, first of all to, I've been to one or two of the shows. And I'd worked out front of house as well, on one show, I think. And then I decided that I would be involved. When they asked me to go on stage. I said, No, I'll do dressing. Because I've done dressing before backstage and I said I'll do that in a dress rehearsal. They realized that they need somebody to call the show and they said really call it lasted years. Because I've done shows like that before we just do it on the spot, you know? So it brought for all my learnings. [00:03:58] It must be quite new for me. [00:04:01] Yes, probably used to it because being the stage manager at a place like rd Center, where shows come in all the time. If it's a big running show, of course they've got their own team, their technical team, etc. But if it's if it's a smaller show, say I don't mean a small on I can remember calling once for the Auckland Philharmonia and the they wanted lighting, special lighting, not done not just down in the house and up on the stage. They they had a handwritten orchestral score. And if you stand out an orchestral score years, you know what it's like. So it's handwritten, but being handwritten, of course, everything was squashed. You know? And the the conductor was from America, I think, I'm not sure. And he said, You know, I want these lines [00:04:49] here. [00:04:50] Patti, how am I gonna read the score, I got one of the Orca Philip to help me with it, they couldn't even read it properly. But you just learned very quickly, that you just learned very quickly how to do things very quickly. [00:05:04] And because I love it so much, you know, and the adrenaline goes sky high that it it helps you through. [00:05:09] So what were the main experiences or memories you have of that first show that you worked on? [00:05:14] Not much? [00:05:18] Which I can't say no, no, not much, except that I was totally focused. And because there was very little time or no time really to get to know anybody. You have to be focused Anyway, when you stage managing, but if I go to rehearsals, I get to know the people and that sort of thing. And that's quite different. But this time, I hadn't been to any rehearsal. So I didn't know who it was, though. Because when you see them backstage with their costumes on, they mean, absolutely nothing to you, except you learn to recognize that they are missing England or than they must be Miss Japan, you know, and it just is that first one was totally, totally focused on what I had to do here, not not even looking at their sort of thing unless that was done by a movement at all, it was much more simple. In those days to Jonathan has grown, it's grown hugely. And the [00:06:13] the technicians backstage and artist into our chosen specifically, I think I'm not sure for that show, who are empathetic with the show, and know that there will be a lot of a few flies, and there will be a few cues and that sort of thing. So and they're not going to be empty at all, they're not empty. You know, and I know most of the technicians anyway, so it's easier for me. [00:06:44] And it also must be quite a different type of show in that you're dealing with maybe people that have not done theatre before. Yes, that's always [00:06:52] different. [00:06:55] So how was that on the on the on the first time for you? [00:06:58] All I get very bossy. [00:07:01] P shortened coming from a teacher at school teacher family, I get very bossy. And I warn them now beforehand, and they know that I'm going to warn them that on the night and during rehearsal, the last rehearsal, perhaps I'm not really interested in anything else, specially not egos. I'm only interested in the show. And people have come to see it. And therefore on on, they've paid money. And they will do as I asked them to, please, I will say plays as an afterthought. But they all know that I'm a little dragon on stage, you know, on the last night, and they all know, to behave. [00:07:44] And I did blow somebody up on the first night. who ended up the front curtains. He was the backstage person and he went out the front curtains and I blow him up. Because that's not what you do. That's what a rank amateur do. I mean, you very rare see that even an amateur theatre. These days, people know not to do that. But he did that. And I sort of had to come up with a high horse. [00:08:12] I guess it's an education thing. Like I mean, if you are doing rehearsals, then they will get to know that like this one. Yes. [00:08:18] Well, that's Well, yes, but it's just to me, it's common sense. But then you have to realize I have to try and realize that these people, especially backstage help us who come in on the last moment, summit, most of them. They don't know the etiquette of theater, and they haven't got it on their minds, that they're not the stars, that the show to me as the star and that people have come to see magic, regardless of whether it is semi amateur, I don't like the word amateur. Because to me, everybody's kind of striving to be professional. And and it's the audience of camps, the magic, regardless of whether it's an orchestra on stage, or whether they we do have a proscenium arch was a curtains going across, you know, it's magic to them. And therefore you don't show it anytime you don't cross that fourth wall sort of thing. And least it's part of the show. And I don't like I just don't like that behavior. [00:09:26] I'm not very tolerant. [00:09:28] So how did you get into stage managing, [00:09:30] and years and years and years ago, I did a little bit in amateur theatre and Grace Church. I was usually on stage, but sometimes I quite liked stage managing. And then when I got I in 1990, I did deployment of drama, and realized that a quite like that big stage technical stuff. And I've done a fair bit of technical stuff before anyway. And [00:09:58] so I was a year out of any sort of work force. And so I applied at the artist intro, not sure if it was that following year or not. But they gave me the job. And I sort of picked it up from there and read a lot of books and did a lot of courses and that sort of thing, you know, did a few courses on it. [00:10:20] What are the main attributes for a good stage manager? [00:10:28] It's quite at the moment. [00:10:31] You have to become a master of inside, everything is falling apart. You can't show that. And also, in an emergency, if somebody asks you to get an emergency, I will hesitate before I answer because it has to be, the car must answer. And often they think I'm not thinking about it. But it has to be the chemist, you also have to be able to think of several things at once. You've got technicians and the See, you've got somebody in this year, and you've got a speaker here with the music and people and you've got his visual out on stage. And so you have to keep sort of hand drawn or that and sometimes [00:11:16] you can't listen to any of it, you just have to, you have to say, you know, quiet, and everybody could shout out while you do the cues and that sort of thing, you know. And I think also you have to be friendly, you have to be similar to a mum sort of on stage, I suppose that's easier for somebody my age. I don't know, for the younger people, it's quite different. But I think they're also a kind of mom on the stage as well. I can remember doing something for a group of musicians who had been on the road for a very, very long time. And this was the last the last stage in New Zealand, and they needed a hug. And that's easy for me because I'm older. You know, and sometimes people just need that. [00:12:02] The can towards the end, particularly on grace rehearsal, and particularly on the night extremely focused, and they know not to talk to me too much. Yeah. And what are the things do they need patience, [00:12:17] and very much patients. And you need to also have a lot of [00:12:25] physical strength. And in some ways in that it's tiring, it can get really, really tiring. And you just have to find that adrenaline from some way. But that's for everybody on stage, it can be very, very tiring for everybody. theater was terribly glamorous from those who, for those who don't know, [00:12:48] what do you say? What did you do? It's quite a few people have made Actually, I wouldn't tell you. [00:12:56] Yes, I think it's glamorous, but it's not hard job. It's 90% standing around, and 10% pure adrenaline. [00:13:04] Can you describe for me what the kind of backstage feeling was like on it, the first time that you were with kind of the whole universe, [00:13:12] it's very difficult to get people who are not used to theater to be quiet backstage, because there's no fourth wall. And I think they think that there's had holes all the way around. But there's not there's only legs. And you've got to be careful. Because anything that happens at the side there can be heard by the audience. And depending on where you're standing can be seen by the audience. And it's very hard show people not just stand like the leaves here. On the stage, the the audience out there, there, there are two that myself and for the [00:13:55] second week, so the kind of [00:13:57] drops that 14. [00:14:00] So that way, you're the audience. But if they stand here, and they can see the audience, the audience can see you. So it's very hard to explain to people right from the start, when you're on the stage, don't stand in those positions. If you can see the audience, they can see you don't pick out just to see mom or dad or whoever. Don't do any of that in Shush. I still have problems with backstage. Yes, they get excited. They're excited. Whereas those which we theater all the time professionals do theater all the time, no, to stay focused backstage Anyway, you know, they know not to chatter backstage, but they're excited, and they've got the big hits on me. You know, they're excited. [00:14:43] So how do you tell people to when you can [00:14:50] probably blow your mind? [00:14:55] You don't do it as a kind of a facial gesture or because I? [00:15:02] And if [00:15:02] they still don't I, I am in contact with the stage manager, Steve? And I tell him, tell him to shut up now. And he knows my voice. [00:15:19] So in your role, are you the kind of head controller of the backstage area? Or is there somebody, [00:15:25] Steve, as Steve and I are sort of partners. And he's learned a hell of a lot in a very short time, and he's very good at it. His job is massive with with coordinating people and getting them into the right place and coordinating everything backstage. And then normally that is done. You do you do have and beg shows that are traveling say you have a head stage manager who does that. And the deputy stage manager who will call all they will reverse roles throughout season. So it's a kind of hand one hand, and I call him boyfriend he calls me girlfriend. [00:16:06] But it's a kind of use, it's a partnership. And he he knows what I do, but he couldn't do it. And I know what he does, and I couldn't hurt his job. You know, we could if we had to, but we don't choose to. [00:16:19] So it hasn't been the same team for a number of years doing it, [00:16:22] Steve for about three, four years, three, four years. And before that there was someone else who was doing it. And he had had some experience a little bit of experience with with amateur theatre. And I'm not sure if he'd had some experience with open film as well, I'm not sure [00:16:39] does that make it easier having that kind of through line with somebody that's been here for three years, [00:16:45] because they know what the show is like. It's not like any other backstage because it's so big. And because you've got so many men and high heeled shoes. And because you've got frocks that are huge, and hair, and stuff that a huge, it is not like a normal, a normal theatre backstage. And if you have normal theater, in the artist center, in particular, you've usually got a musical or something like that. And there's not big hair, big rocks. [00:17:16] And they're all they've all been touring or something like that for years. So they know the place, sort of thing. I don't mean that rudely they know their space, an area that was something like Queen of the whole universe there. And, you know, it's a wonderful show for them. And it's a wonderful vehicle for them. And it shows their talents as a as a person and as a dancer and as a creative person with their dresses and their hair and that sort of thing. And [00:17:44] they often don't know the backstage advocate as well, perhaps. Yeah. [00:17:49] So perhaps Can we go through the the process of going through the initial ideas to the rehearsal to the performance? When do you become involved? What point? [00:18:01] I don't have anything to do with the ideas at all. This is just Jonathan. And I guess Kevin has a huge input to and [00:18:11] I go to rehearsals as much as well, yes, I go to all rehearsals. [00:18:16] And what do you do at rehearsals, [00:18:17] certain lesson. And if anybody's away, I will join in with with Jonathan. And he and I have some rude moments together. [00:18:29] And that's good. [00:18:33] But yes, I joined on Sunday, the way and I need you know, if it's the group whole group doing everything together, I'll, I'll join in, because you get used to the movements and, and stuff. Yeah. [00:18:43] So you actually documenting things is through his whole boat. So it's like a script tour. [00:18:48] Now Jonathan writes the script with, [00:18:52] with me in mind and with the others in mind. And we usually have a big talk beforehand, the backpack backstage people like Steve and myself and Jonathan, Kevin and, and Jen will come along to. And we talk about the way to move things and how to do things. And that's the area. And when I talk, we talk about lights and sound. And that sort of thing was me, but I've always got beforehand. And I've got any words, for songs, particularly the first piece that is usually made up of 345 songs with with movement in there. And I've usually got paid early on, because I like to follow that so that I get it in my head and can sing it along with them and know also where I am. And then he'll give me the cues within that quite clearly. So I'll stop in my head sitting in my little corner of stats, calling the cues so that I know what's happening and what they're doing at that time. If that's a visual cue. [00:19:50] And when you say cue what what does that What does a cue [00:19:54] a cue is, could be a lighting cue lighting change, it could be a fly queue for something come down. [00:20:02] It could be an IV queue for something to go up on the screen. Or it could be it won't be a sound cue because that has first sounds go right the way through, you know, they are a compilation that he's done that Jonathan has done or had done for everything. And [00:20:20] I just need to know where stuff comes. I like to listen to the music and know where it's coming and where the changes come. And I will mark on my script if if of the of the words, if that's a long note here, I'll market with my own little highlight graphics. [00:20:36] Is this. Is this really the color pins coming? [00:20:40] No. First of all, it'll be pencil. Everything's pencil. First of all, look at the colored pens don't come in until I know that is complete. And for Cameron usually on the day of performance. [00:20:51] And what do they refer to, [00:20:53] and lighting, sound and IV and everything like that. So the color pins come into my cues and my like the script just written down like this. My first of all, my first script of the first piece is usually just on this way down this way with words. And I've got notes all over. But then when the when the actual script comes in, there's this Buffy and bimbo narrative and then the what has happening and sound and music and blah, blah, blah and lights and all that sort of thing. And that's where I put my cues and, and all my notes and what's happening and Duffy and the logo to talk for a long time there. I know that and all sorts of things, just just my general notes that I know that I need to have, I should have brought them along. Sorry [00:21:44] to show you because I've got some that are catching on the full of notes. But if I write it down like that, I very really have to return to that. Unless it's a really tight series of cues that I have to remember, for this one that's written this way, I still follow it. And if there's any notes on the side, having written them down, I remember it, you know. [00:22:12] And when you're writing cues, there's a specific language that you use [00:22:16] with just que la x one. Or if S slash be y que la x two that'll be standby Alex Q, and I have into into an x two for exit, or six one or send it something like that Navy, as the is the projection and flies as if I don't try to change it to fly is. [00:22:45] So when you're actually calling the show you you're talking in that kind of code? [00:22:48] No, I'll say stand by Alex q1. [00:22:51] It looks q1, doe. [00:22:53] And it has to be if they go too soon, I tell them off, I'll say it's too soon. Because what might be on the screen may not quite happen in reality. So you have to be aware that it's a feel thing as well as an actual thing. You know, if somebody said something, and there was a pause, and the excuse supposed to come on right on there, but there's, but there's lighting going on at this process or something, something, you got to feel it and do it then I don't like people doing it too soon. I like them to listen to me and it has to be positive. You have to give lighting sound and a fee about 10 seconds standby. But flies have to have about 30 seconds standby because they have to go to the rope and then take off the brake and hold and you know that all takes time. [00:23:47] So is what lighting lighting Okay, [00:23:50] so and is the exes? Or is the effects the sound? And IV is what's coming up on the screen and flies flies, of course. And it it say if it's a Pyro thing, it's just usually Pyro, if it's pyrotechnics, but we don't have that, please don't hit fire or [00:24:11] you can hit some other show for Mike was right he wants and it was a huge one. It was an awards. And he might Missouri he isn't just an amazing Do you know him and his work? He will dream something and he has the ability to actually create that dream. He is he he works for Louis Vuitton stuff now he's he's he's just an amazing and he and his wife and just an amazing partnership and all the people around him. And he had coming on a man he was on fire, followed by so you have to be touched on that side come across my desk on the side, followed by a huge, huge, huge, Drafthouse was fake. [00:25:00] This draft was like pics, [00:25:04] snotty and stuff. [00:25:09] And his name was [00:25:14] Tony. [00:25:15] Bottom, is this thing going faster, you know? And as Phaedra this big, but those are the days those are the days when you're glad that that part of the show is over? Yes. [00:25:25] So have you tried to interest Jonathan? I'm doing something Oh, no, [00:25:29] no, no, no, no, you have to have professionals, not the Jonathan stop. But I mean, you'd have to he would have to hire somebody or coerce them to be on the show who are professionals with fire or anything like that. But horses, animals, horses in particular, you know. [00:25:47] That's a big thing. Horses are because they have to be stable somewhere nearby and they have to be stabled on the in the capital can is quite a difficult thing. It's not an easy thing to do. [00:26:01] So just getting back to when you call something, and if somebody does something wrong, and you say that's wrong, do you have a code for, you know, bad messages back to them, [00:26:12] and wait for it, wait for my call, please. I try to keep very calm. And if I've said myself, I said, you know, but I don't usually I know, because [00:26:26] it's a live show. And even if you do the same show 20 times things can still go wrong. And the live show you've got to the audience don't know that something's happened the wrong and correctly, they don't know it all. It's only you that know. And it doesn't matter. That's gone. So it doesn't matter, you know? And so no, I don't know. [00:26:52] It's a team affair. And if you rubbish your team, [00:27:00] it doesn't happen. You're only as good as your team. [00:27:04] And that applies to any business, or anything. You're only as good as your team. And I don't think that I'm the boss or anything like that. I'm just working as a team with everybody. And that includes the actors and Jonathan and Kevin and everybody, you know. Yeah. [00:27:19] So in the rehearsal period, do you tell the queen of the whole universe cast? You know what to expect when you get in the theater? Not? [00:27:27] No, we do that just beforehand. And Jonathan does that. Yeah. And I don't have a talk with him until we're in the stage, because they've got to get used to those who have done it before. No. But those who haven't done it before, it can be quite daunting being on a stage. And especially the artist stage, the ISP theater, it's a big stage. And when you look out, there's a massive amount, three whole levels of audience there. And this is what they saying and their minds I that I see all those seats, and it can be quite daunting for you. And so now I don't, you know, it's most important that they get used to where they are, how to get around and have feel, the first thing you've got to tell them is how to evacuate, of course, and what to do and what not to do in the theater itself. [00:28:20] So now I never tell people things. And the first guy over really anyway, Mr. Mr. thing, [00:28:26] because not only the stage would be different than walking out to the audience, but things like dressing rooms and with congregation, that must all change. [00:28:35] Yes, it does. Because when we rehearse, we're only rehearsing in a hole. And usually it's it's the Graceland library Hall, which is great. But the theater, it's bigger. So the lines where they've been squashed out the first rehearsal as an orientation, where your dressing rooms are, how you get to hear how the technology sounds. And they often don't know what technology is. So they have to listen. And, and, you know, to 10 years [00:29:06] 10 ways I am a speaker system, to each dressing room named after the person who [00:29:15] thought of, I think, and it's a speaker system to every dressing room, and they need to be aware of it on their 10 way. They also have the background music of what's happening on the stage, which they can turn down, but my voice doesn't turn down. And if there's an emergency, and emergency overrides my voice and everything. Yeah. So that's that's what they need to listen to. They need to know things like up stage and down stage, which and they need to know people need to know why I feel upstage was it was when the stages were right now the audience are right. But upstage was obvious downstage was here, the as the audience, and they were sitting on the flat now there's, they're sitting there, and we're on the flap. Some old stages are still right. Yeah, but those words are still used, you know. [00:30:07] And so they need to know, a fair bit of that sort of thing, you know, just aged stage mannerisms. [00:30:17] We, as I say, where the dressing room is, and where Jonathan and, and not to touch them unless they have to sort of thing and knock on the door. This is Buffy and Bumble. Yes, yes. Yeah. And I use their dressing room, because the stage managers room is just a room it for some reason, and the artist enter it doesn't have a toilet. So I go into the toilet. And that's my last minute rituals. You see it down here? rituals, you know, and I think when I was on stage, I always had to count on him. But now I only have to have a quick way. And they all know. Okay, Alison's coming through for a quick way. [00:30:54] Five minutes. [00:30:56] Oh, yes. [00:30:58] After, before my last call to everybody. And I teach them also the course, because the half hour call is it if the show is going to start at eight, so the half hour call is 25 past seven. And the quarter hour call is 22. Eight, and the five minute call is 10 to eight, and the standby is at five to eight. [00:31:23] So that gives if you need to, but usually they think the standby call is actually on the deck that I've explained it to them. But they also you know, and that rehearsal to that that orientation rehearsal, is to sort out for Steve and his team to sort out where the stuff is, how they're going to move it, there's a massive job, how they move things on and off stage, which has done first of all, to in a meeting, when we know how big everything is, because we've been to their rehearsals as well. And how they going to get paid on an off stage. You know, a lot of people come off stage and just like they get off lifts, people, they get off lifts and just stay there or they get off an escalator and stand there. And people are coming through you know. [00:32:13] And often I'll see somebody getting changed in the wings. And I'll always have a torch. So shine a torch was done reading that just so they can see. Or I'll shine something down on the ground so that if they've had a bright light on them, they can see when they're coming out. And offstage or shine, just help them on and off stage. I don't leave my area. Unless I have to have a visual cue of people's movements if something's coming down, you know, so that I'm calling the flies, but the somebody in the way? Yeah. [00:32:48] So do you have much to do with buffing them both throughout the show? Oh, yes. Oh, yes. What are some of the stories [00:32:57] photo and the last one I should have [00:32:58] brought it. [00:33:00] of me. It was some Duffy's dress wasn't done up and we were lacing it. And then I was trying to do that too. And bimbo was trying to do something. So I started the lacing at the bottom. And then those at the top, because there's so much taller than I am. So here are these two under here. Am I here? You know, and we got it done? You know, because you have to do I think they're going out on I think they had to go out there because they've got a lot of work to do in front of house first of all, you know it, doesn't it? nothing bothers me backstage, if I see anybody or I often ask how they managed to check this thing, you know. [00:33:41] And they tell me gaffer tape, and I'm like, Oh, no, [00:33:45] no. [00:33:47] Do that. But you know, [00:33:52] I just love working with them. Because they all accept me, then they they know I'm not gay. And and I mean, some people, people who are part of it aren't gay. And that I think that's the best thing of it all that we're mostly gay. But some some of us aren't. You know, I think that's the best thing that all. And I've also encouraged a lot of people from sometimes from my work, you know, have you been to this? I wanted to go ahead, well, why don't you go to, you know, go to it. And I've told people that, you know, it's it's raising funds for the New Zealand AIDS Foundation. [00:34:30] I can't do much money wise, I'm not in a position. At this time of life to do things that I would like to do. I want to millions of dollars, I'd have such joy and giving money [00:34:41] away. But [00:34:44] I can give my services and my knowledge to somebody and altering event. And I've learned a lot. And when the representative from the New Zealand AIDS Foundation comes around, just before we move into the theater, she tells us the last time she told us that there's more. This gonorrhea and syphilis are coming back, you know, and I think why is it just because we're not wearing condoms, you know, and I even taught my said to my son's, you've got to wear condoms. For various reasons, the most important at this point in your life is to stop spreading diseases, you know? Did they were there? [00:35:29] Why? I don't know why the straight guys but why didn't they do it? You know? [00:35:37] What? So? I feel what's been that a man sorry, a man that feels this. That it's [00:35:46] it's supposed my enjoyment or tough. far as I'm concerned, that is not a reason not to work on. You know, women take the pill. It's most uncomfortable. I took the pill for a long time. It made me bloated, fatter, you know, I've never worn anything else. But I can imagine the very uncomfortable. And what's so bad about wearing a condom that men feel they're in escalated for some reason, if they don't wear one, or it's not as enjoyable. Give a life. That's my answer to it. Get a life. There are so many children in this world that aren't loved, because the mountain were condom. And there are so many diseases in this world that are not only part of the gay community, they're part of all of us, as as part of all of us. Because the men wouldn't work on. Get a life. That's all I have to say about that. Really, I just get the older I get the more angry I become about people's preciousness, [00:36:54] life as the precious thing. Not your pleasure to have just as much play for the hand job as far as I'm concerned. [00:37:03] And it's interesting that the somebody from Gates Foundation comes and talks to the grace before before performance. [00:37:10] Yes, hands out knowledge that they all love chocolate bars. But that's just as a bit of a joy thing. And gives us all condoms. [00:37:21] Yes. For the event. [00:37:23] And use as well. And I think condoms are available in the event as well. Oh, sorry. Sorry. [00:37:33] Possibly? I don't know, I don't see this. But definitely out in the foyer, I think there's condoms available. And to me, they should be freely available, you know, and it shouldn't be the New Zealand AIDS Foundation that has to sponsor that. It should be I don't know, the health department, the New Zealand goat, which comes back to the New Zealand government. And all governments must take responsibility. I feel, you know. [00:37:56] So you were saying earlier that [00:38:00] during the performance, you are absolutely focused and you know, [00:38:04] get quite stern. Yes. Where's the enjoyment for you? What, at what point do you say, wow, that's fantastic, was great. [00:38:13] So you can be, [00:38:14] you can be stern. And yes, all the way through. It's the it's, it's the joy of my mind going flat out. It's the joy of working with technicians whom I just I just love being in that area. It's the joy of working with performers who might just love working in that area with and Buffy MMO. And the audience, because I think it's the whole thing, isn't it, it's the, it's the audience and it's you, I did a one man show once one person show once as an actor. And somebody said to me that if you're learning in a sick notes, you're in the audience, you're working together for this show. It's the whole the whole thing. I love being and going into the darkened stage, and knowing there's magic performed out there. It's the whole thing. And afterwards, [00:39:09] I find it unable to go celebrating immediately, I need to go on stage, and help with pulling up the gaffer tape and the leaky pipe and all that sort of thing and backing away. Whereas my husband, he works on the not on the IV side with us. But he's an AV technician and an AV editor and that sort of thing. You know, he can't standard. He likes the preparation and the show, and then he needs to walk away. Whereas I like to do the preparation, the rehearsals, the show and stay there and help to clear out that, that that is the not the funeral the [00:39:47] the going back to normality, perhaps I don't know. Because that can't be normal all the time. Cannot you'd love to do it all the time. That can be normal. So that's for me go normal, and then I go out and have a drink, or four. [00:40:02] So again, that's a kind of a ritual that you do you do that for all the show. Yeah, [00:40:06] yes. Yes. Yes. And I've always done I'd have gone on stage afterwards and help pack out and that sort of thing. Yes, it's just, it's just my, it's my way of coming down. You know, I need to come down from there. If I didn't come down from that I wouldn't be able to sleep properly. It takes a long time to learn to sleep properly after these. [00:40:28] Often people will say, Oh, you know, that if they if they were only short term, if they've spent so much time trying to get to sleep again. It does take a long time. So you've got to come down off that adrenaline. And if the next day, you're absolutely stuffed. And I mean, poor Steve, if we're down in Wellington has to drive the truck all the way home, you know, and he has to keep that adrenaline still going. But you're absolutely tough The next day, and maybe for two or three days afterwards. And it's only because you've used audio gentlemen, you know, [00:41:02] we're talking now towards the final Queen of the whole universe beauty pageant. And I'm just wondering if you had any thoughts on that [00:41:12] everything has to come to a naturally and and I think probably it's run its course. He will have something else in mind for sure. [00:41:20] For sure.

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