What happens backstage…stays backstage. By Lisa Lias

I write this on Monday, May 14th. We just completed our first 8 show week. As I was falling asleep last night, happy and tired at having pulled that off with my team – the cast and phenomenal stage management squadron – I thought I should try to fill in what happens between scenes. (Actually, I’m rising to Katie Atkinson’s challenge that our blog posts not all be love-fests.) The show itself can be seen. But backstage, well, you had to be there. So…

Top of show. Check my pocket for what I need as a washer woman, give Dan the alarm clock, go stage left and dance to Tom Teasley till the lights go down. Scoot to the hidy-hole stage left when it goes dark.

(Top of show happens. I exit after Midas.)

Exit stage left, do not run into anybody changing stage left, drop laundry basket in the loading dock, make a beeline for the dressing room. Get rid of head scarf, start wrapping “Iris” dress. Put on flower head piece, red lipstick, turn around and head through the loading dock. Cross to stage right, yield to sea battle people headed the other way at high rates of speed. Get way up on the step for the God Platform, do not be seen.

(First Iris entrance happens. I exit.)

Lisa Lias as Iris, at rest with Ashley Ivey as Sleep

Come off, get alarm clock, let Kat get by, wait for it, nod at Dan to open the door.

(Second Iris entrance happens. Exit.)

Make a beeline from stage right to the loading dock and back to the dressing room. Jewell hugs the wall as I blast through – “Hi Jewell! Bye Jewell!” Talk to Megan about how it’s going while undressing completely. Leotard, black body suit, wig, pony tail. Get dress and bathing suit, head to loading dock, place dress and suit. Dance around to “Kingfisher,” let Keith past with the mops, head up the stairs. Wait for Matt to enter, go to entrance 6. Wait for it, nod at Kat to open door.

(First Hunger entrance happens. Matt carries me off.)

Get the hell off poor Matt. Dance to Teasley. Get on the low lighting platform. Wait for Jeff to say “Hey, little girl!” Get on Matt’s shoulders. Pull up on lighting boom so Matt can stand.

(Second Hunger entrance. Exit, knife in hand.)

Turn the dam knife around so it doesn’t stick anyone, run like hell, pull wig off, start zipper. Throw wig, knife and fork on prop table while presenting zipper to Kat. Get 100% naked asap. Into bathing suit and dress. Keep track of the music. Run. Hit stage left, keep tying dress, lose the pony tail, recompose so the entrance looks as if I’ve been relaxing without a thing to do, and right about then it’s time to enter.

(First entrance in Orpheus. Walk off sadly, then…)

Jump into shade bag, wait for the #3 doors to be open, enter.

(Second Orpheus entrance. Exit shadily.)

Get out of bag, head through the crossover. Go to dressing room. Get cap for nursemaid and the blindfold. Adjust dress. First moment of the show where I don’t have to go straight back onstage. If Misty and Megan are still here, then I’m not late for the nurse entrance. But in short order, head stage right with a towel or robe. Place that out of the way. Wait for “part two: the solution.” Peek out and watch Megan go about 3 steps. Go to door 5 and burst in.

(First Nurse entrance. Exit with Megan’s wet wrap and Matt’s dry coat. Do not get the dry coat wet…)

Wrap up stage left. Wait for Matt to start screaming. Go to door 5. As soon as Matt hits the wings, enter.

(Second Nurse entrance. Exit.)

Bomb through the loading dock, drop off nurse cap and the towel, shake out hair and retie dress while going to the crossover. Get the floaty for Phaeton. Doors open at #3.

(Phaeton entrance.)

Back to dressing room, wrap up, wait for Keith to start singing, head stage left.

(Eros entrance.)

Drop bow and arrow at prop table, get back up to door 5 for “answering the door” bits. Go to entrance #6.

(First Baucis and Philomon entrance)

Drop pot and spoon, dive under the platform for #3, line up for candles.

Does this demystify the show? I always think we should have an alternate ticketing option that allows people to watch from backstage. It’s non-stop traffic from “places” to blowing out the candles. If I try to “run the film” of the show in my head, half of it is a blur of passing people in the dark. And I lot of fun. (Sorry, Atkinson.)


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