Opening Night: The CAT Presents The Merchant Of Venice

There are some things I still need to change and tweak but at least I got it exported in time to get the theater 5 minutes before curtain.
Thanks go out to the cast from the bottom of my heart for being so understanding!

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Here’s Hoping it worked! Where the CAT is now; Where it’s going; Why you should care

The CAT will never turn you away. Weather you are an artist, playwright, actor, techie, or someone who just wants a place to hang out– your contributions are always welcome. Officials have perpetuated the belief that the lesser-knowns and the underdogs are the most important in art because art is supposed to be about the underdog, or, cat in this case. They are a nonprofit theater so they can be free to take risks and take in every person who comes in their doors.

Now, they mount productions to test your mind and comfort level, which, I can guarantee they’ll continue to do. Steps have been taken to improve their outreach using social media; but they refuse to cow-tow to anyone but those who share a love for theater. As a result, their future will be filled with community and a family of the truest artistic variety. Though they may stay small, they will always stay rebellious. This is the kind of place every artist dreams of succeeding, which is precisely why it will.  

Rocky Horror Kittie Porn (The vid)

Rocky Horror Kittie Porn from Alexis Evans on Vimeo.

The original idea, which was well-planned in advance, was to have a mock-Rocky Horror production feline style. I had a schedule, a script, and committed actors and… well, cat actors. Then, meetings were cancelled, recordings were badly recorded, and the cats seriously tested my nerves by doing the exact opposite of what I needed at every possible moment. I mean this sincerely!

“Hey Rocky, come over here”

Rocky goes over toward the door.

LIGHTBULB!

“Hey Rocky, go over there!”

Rocky comes to me.

VICTORY!

Rocky falls to the ground and goes to sleep.

FAIL!

Okay okay, I can still work with this. I’ll just film them on my background. They kept rubbing their adorable faces on the background that took a lot of time, money, and effort on my unbelievably non-artistic abilities and knocked it over more than they stood by it. It was adorable for about a second–then I wanted to kill them.

Is this how directors feel toward their actors? Are all actors, human or feline, as arrogant, self-centered, and completely clueless? As an actor who is arrogant, self-centered, and self-aware—-NO!!

But those freaking cats wouldn’t do anything but sleep or run away from me! And if I did manage to get my hands on them long enough to try to put a costume on them they tossed it off, ran away right afterward, OR PEED ON IT!! Yes, if you think the background (which I admit looked like crap but I SWEAR I TRIED) took effort– those costumes…. Have you ever tried making a costume period? Hard enough. Then add in the fact that you’re making it for animals. Okay still. Add in the fact that all I had was glue, tape, pipe-cleaners, and felt that I bought from Deals– I’m a poor college student- get over it. The costumes were pointless, not one fit and all were destroyed in the making of this ‘fuck-you-feline-fiesta!’

Now, I understand I should’ve seen some of these difficulties coming. I’m a theater person, I understand working with what you’re given. So, okay. We’ll just re-work the theme a bit. Rocky-Horror turns into Outtakes of Rocky Horror.

Then, I had to rewrite the script. Okay, not a big deal. Then, my actors backed out and forgot to get back to me. I get it. We’re artists and we’re not always reliable. BUT SCREW YOU I JUST WANT TO GET THIS VIDEO OVER WITH!

So, the audio was recorded around 6a the day the project was due. I had already edited a great deal of the footage and only needed the voice-over. Due to others who-shall-remain-nameless-and-friendless-until-their-hour-of-death backing out on me, I asked my best friend if he could do it for me. After the first take, I asked him to speak louder and if we could do it again– now my friend Bill and I were up most of the night rewriting the script, editing the footage in Gregg Lab until 2a, doing homework until at least 4 a.m. But I didn’t sleep and he got about two hours before I woke him up bribing him with food in order to record with me. We went into the sound-proof booth but that caused my camera to not record the sound hardly at all– Why you ask? Funny, I’d like to know too. So, shut the hell up and let’s continue the story. We’re not nearly done yet. Anyway, Bill looked at me like I was a Nazi terrorist for wanting to shoot a second take and he had to get to class anyway so– fine. Just get the freaking thing over with!

Finally, the technology…oh the technology. Screw the technology. It hated me. I had to restart the computer four times before I could start to add in the audio! Now, like I said, I had the footage done! Donzo! All I really had to do was lay the audio on top of it and try to edit it so it fit with the video and make sure the levels were somewhat even.
This act alone caused me to go into panic and email my professor telling him in a not-so-pleasant tone that I was unhappy with my work at present. At the time, the video was due in two hours. However, an hour and a half spent on the audio alone and the video was done.

Hurray?

Oh, ye of little deduction powers.

The project wouldn’t save, the files wouldn’t open, a great deal of them were lost, and so much time was spent editing and re-editing that very little time was actually spent on providing a cohesive element. The underlying music alone was found about thirty minutes before I had to be in class to turn in the project.The music also had to be reformatted four times before it would transfer to Adobe Premiere. When I say the project wouldn’t save I mean that I had three– count em– THREE personnel of the Gregg Lab staff come over to help me save it and I ended up with no less than seven different versions of the video saved in different formats before we found one that actually worked!

I swear, I’m almost done. But you wanna know what I think the worst part of the whole thing was for me? Not the change of plans, not even the technology literally using my ass for a munching plate… Nope. In the ten hours I was in Gregg Lab, I saw at least half of my classmates come in, edit, and leave within a span of two hours. Really? Here I am doing my best not to ball my eyes out or murder a techi in cold blood for not knowing what “.mov4” means!! And there they are, just strolling in and strolling out, probably eating food or having a life.  What makes them so special? What did I do to deserve this? No cats were harmed in the making of the video– though many of them deserved it. And you PITA people leave me alone! I’m venting here!

One of the joys of theater is rehearsal and a feeling of commitment by every person there. There is very little technology and if you have trouble with the lighting or such there is most likely a veteran of the theater who knows everything through experience and hearsay. Shooting a video is different. Both are artistic and rewarding but theater is my element. The technology makes sense. The mechanics I get. And the people I love. Cats. No thank you. Not again. Screw cats. And technology. And, just for fun, screw classmates. I’ll take cast-mates over them any day!

Okay. I’m done.

I hope you like it. But if not… just watch it anyway.

Rocky Horror Kittie Porn

I will soon be posting a Viral Video called Rocky Horror Kittie Porn. I had originally intended to make a mock-Rocky-Horror Sweed but working with cats is not a job for pussies (pun DEFINITELY intended). So, this is a video about why people shouldn’t work with cats with parallels of how working with actors can try your last nerve. This video will be posted as soon as technology learns to like me and stops screwing me over. Details to come. Thanks.

The Meaning of the CAT

What Does the CAT Mean to You? from Alexis Evans on Vimeo.

I interviewed three people to show how those from all walks of life here in Charleston Illinois find their own ways of identifying with the Charleston Alley Theatre. Susan found family, Tom identified with the intimacy of the theater, and Zen admired the challenging nature of their productions. By hearing their perspectives I received new insight into this unique organization. I hope it does the same for you!

Come to Play

I chose the alleyway itself, the photo-covered walls as well as the carved brick wall, and the Iron CAT sign that has been there since the founding of the Charleston Alley Theatre as the primary subjects of this video. The alleyway signifies the uniqueness of the association and the underdog (even if they are cats) lable related to this organization. The photos and wall signings were most important to me in that they chiefly describe how the cat commemorates their past and present friends and performers. Finally, the sign shows tradition.

It was fun once I stopped crying 😛

Come to Play from Alexis Evans on Vimeo.

Viral Vids

The Kony 2012 video has officially become viral. Within less than a month this video has received over 84 million, that’s MILLION, views. Those responsible are chiefly associated as an independent movement to have Joseph Kony extracted from his postions of power. However, one can certainly argue they are mostly a combined advocate for the Invisible Children association.

Thank God, or Ala (whatever), for Llamas with Hats. 24 Million views and counting. Counting the busted guts. 🙂