Blog: Jack Cook

Tuesday 4th July – second day at the Half Moon Theatre and the fun for day one carried on to this day as I was able to work Jack (Square)with Phil with setting up the lighting for the upcoming show for Eclipse Youth Theatre who are school year 4-6s. When I was first introduced to Phil we went straight into the theatre where I had the chance to take over the lighting board to manage the lights the way Phil told me to. Phil had to change the lights for the show that was happening that day so I had to turn the lights on with the lighting board to see if they were the right lights for the show. When Phil taught me how to use the lighting board it was a bit nerve-racking at first as it looked and sounded complicated, but as we went through the lights I got more comfortable and better at it each time, so my nerves finally went away. After that job me and Phil had to go up and down the stairs from his workshop to the office to pack items needed to start a school project called ‘Dramatic Maths’. This task was easy as we just had to get items to put into the bag, however the task was tiring and long as we had to keep on going up and down the floors and it took a while finding the suitable items for the project. After this long but easy task I had my lunch break, which I needed at the time as the last job was very tiring. After my lunch break me and Phil had to go to the theatre and run a technical rehearsal so we were ready for the show that night. This was a job of multitasking as I had to manage the light panel and the sound panel and press it in time when Phil said so. After that I was given the opportunity of taking photos of the dress rehearsal which was a good and exciting job for me. After the performance it was time for me to finish my second day at work which was 12-6pm.

Wednesday 5th July – Third day of work experience at the Half Moon and the fun for yesterday and the day before carried on as I had to do some more practical jobs. Me and Phil had to get all the light and sound equipment ready and prepared for another two shows that were taking place that day. My first job was to put gaffer tape on the edge of the staging so the audience know where the stage goes up to so they don’t fall off the stands as the lighting was pitch black. This job was very tiring and long as I had to tape a total of six stages. This job might sound easy but it wasn’t as the tape had to be put on correctly for Health and Safety rules. After this job it was time to go back to the lighting panel and repeat the same job with Phil as yesterday when sorting out the lighting. After this job I was sent to the shop by Phil to purchase some fly spray to kill the flies that were coming into the theatre due to the heat on that day. After I bought the spray I sprayed the room with fly spray and at first the fly spray looked like it wasn’t working but after five or ten minutes all the flies were gone which was good as I was able to work without the flies annoying me. After this I was sent back to the light and sound panel to do a technical rehearsal, only this time it was much easier and less nerve-racking as I knew what I was doing this time.  After this around 6pm I received a very nice comment from Euan who commented very nicely on my photography skills from the day before during the dress rehearsal, so because of my photography skills from the other day Euan asked if I would like to take some more photos and record the actual live performance not just the rehearsal. After I took the photos and filmed the show it was time for me to stop working as it was the end of my shift, which was from 2:30-8:30pm.

Thursday 6th July – Although the previous days were fun in this journey of work experience today wasn’t fun. The reason why the day wasn’t fun is because there was no more practical work left for the week, so I had to do a lot of not so exciting office work. The office work I had to do was write out a catalogue for over 50+ playwrights including a synopsis of each play. By around 12:30 I had my lunch break for the day which finished 13:30, which I was dreading as I didn’t want to go back to doing the office work. This made me realise and change my attitude to work as you learn that sometimes you might go to work and not like what you’re doing but you need to get on with it. Half hour went by and during my boring office work Phil asked if I wanted to help him with the garden so automatically my brain was telling me to say yes so I decided to help him work on the garden, so that was that DAY!!

Friday 7th July –Today at the Half Moon Theatre it was the same day as Thursday with boring office work with a big surprise that led me to doing some practical work. Today I have been writing up my blog for the Half Moon and done some cataloguing which might sound boring like Thursday but it was more relaxing which really cooled me down from this heat, which was nice. Then I had my lunch at 12:30 to 1:30, then after I carried on with my task but instead Phil asked if I wanted to help him with the sticking up frames on the wall which was good as I was getting bored up to this point. When we got upstairs to start work Ricki put on some music and she was kind enough to let me pick the music and was very supportive when finding out what sticker goes to what frame. Then I accidentally stuck the wrong side of the sticker which Phil took quite well and was very supportive as he helped me get a new one.

Overall I’m glad I picked the Half Moon over getting placed by my school as I felt like the people here are so supportive and very kind. Also I would recommend based on my experience at the Half Moon going to this company for work if you like theatre and you want to know what goes on behind the scenes.

Special thanks to:

  • Phil
  • Beccy
  • Ricki
  • Euan
  • Stephen

Download Jack Cook – Youth Theatre Reports

Jack came to us from Langdon Park School (Tower Hamlets) from 3-7 July 2017.