A lot of people liked the poster for Black Comedy and in particular the photo and asked how it was done.
Well it’s actually a composite. Steve explains:
“The concept was in my mind but how to achieve it? With limited time to take photos we got into costume during our rehearsal tea break and I took about 10-15 shots of each actor in various poses, including some of lit matches and a lighter, my idea being to create the final image in the ‘digital darkroom’ – my computer.”
“Then the hard work really began. Using Photoshop CC I selected poses from the seventy odd taken that would fit both the concept of the play and the character story and began to edit them to create a black background, artificial shadows, artificial pools of light from the inserted matches and so on. Consisting of 30 or more layers of images and treatments and about four hours work on a Mac the final image emerged…. and then the poster could be created which itself is another composite of about 20 layers….”
With Black Comedy already over we are already working on the next play, due for performance at the end of April. That will be Alan Ayckbourn‘s wonderful Neighbourhood Watch and details are already available on our Up Next page (oh, and its never too early to book if you want to reserve the best seats now).
Meanwhile, watch out for our Black Comedy report and our gallery of photos in our next post in a few days time.
So last night was First Night for Black Comedy and what an excellent night it was too. Two nights to go and seats are still available for Saturday if you know of anyone who needs a good laugh.
From the actor’s perspective First Night is a journey of discovery. Whilst professionals usually have the advantage of preview nights to test and refine with an audience we face an audience for the first time not really knowing what the reactions will be. Will they laugh at that line, that move? And it works the other way too, during the performance you can find people laughing at lines or actions that you never realised were funny.
So First Night requires not just a case of settling those nerves but also managing the unexpected, unanticipated reactions of the audience and working with it. But beware. Every audience is different so whilst lessons learned from the first night can be used to anticipate and enhance the performance don’t be surprised if the laughs come in different places.
But that is what makes live theatre so rewarding – it is a communication with the audience, a two-way interaction – not just for the actors but for the audience too.