Cherie's experience of the premiere of Artificial Things
Cherie writes about her experience of Stopgap’s premiere, Artificial Things…
The 5th of February arrived and there was a lot of excitement in the air: it was the day of the premiere of Artificial Things at The Point, Eastleigh.
It had come round so quickly, it only felt like the other week that I was sorting all of the flyers and posters, over printing them all and sending them off, speaking to the venues point of contacts, sending numerous emails, and ringing people to be invited. How time flies!
In the office Nicky, Charlotte and myself had the checklist of all the merchandise that we needed to remember to bring along: T-shirts check, Hoodies check, First Light check… We arrived at the Point (a beautiful venue) at about 3pm and managed to catch the dancers before they went off for their dress rehearsal.
As show time neared, we set up our merchandise table with the T-shirts, hoodies, programmes, books and packs laid out, we were ready to roll. As the audience arrived, my role was to sell as much as I could from our merchandise table and to welcome and escort the V.I.P’s to the reception, where there were drinks and nibbles…and lots of it! I really enjoyed interacting with the audience and it was great to see how many people had come to watch, despite the weather and travel being against them.
The moment we had all been waiting for arrived at 7.30pm, everyone took their seats, the chitter chatter quietened, the lights went out and the stage lights came up as Artificial Things premiered…
There was a rush during the interval as audience members queued up to buy programmes and we also managed to sell two t-shirts: clearly Artificial Things was having a positive affect on the audience.
As the lights went out and the dancers came forward to take their bow the whole audience stood to give the dancers a standing ovation. A smile beamed across my face, I absolutely loved Artificial Things, it is such a fun, moving, heart warming and expressive piece (Henry the hover on wheels was definitely star of the show though).
With the performance over I had one last job to do, audience feedback forms/surveys. I whizzed round asking people their opinions of Artificial Things: it was great to hear first hand reviews, with many 5 star recommendations.
A week later Artificial Things came to my University, the University of Surrey and was performed in the Ivy Arts Centre. I had done a lot of social media advertisement for this performance, as well as handing out flyers and sticking up posters around Guildford town, which paid off, as there were a lot of people, including our Guildford Youth Company taking up the front row.
Again I was there with Charlotte selling merchandise, escorting V.I.P’s to the drink reception and talking to the audience members and the Youth group. The performance was once more a fantastic success and I got some great feedback forms from the audience.
I have really enjoyed being a part of the Stopgap team for both performances and I have gained a lot of experience in what has to happen before the premiere of a dance work, such as advertising, marketing it to the right people, selling the merchandise and the vital part of collecting the audience feedback and reviews.
If you haven’t seen Artificial Things, I highly recommend you do!