Fringe 'DOs and DON'Ts' from Stage Manager Damian RobertsonDate: 11 August 2011
One of the first results if you Google my name is last year's Whatsonstage.com blog, hurriedly written the night before the deadline: a testament that you should not leave work to the last minute (a lesson I really should have learned at school).
So why am I now sitting in bed at 02:30, tapping out this year's effort, and making exactly the same mistake again? Put simply, Edinburgh is busy. Really busy. There's thousands of options for what you could be doing at one time, dozens of things you should been doing, and often a handful of things you must do at that very instant or else. I was so busy I forgot to eat properly, and promptly fell ill. I drank a couple of litres of orange juice, was told that "That's not how five-a-day works", but felt better anyway.
I was so busy it took a few days to message my flatmates and check my home has not been burnt down in the London riots. So busy that I have currently seen only one show other than my own. So busy I'm trying to remember how to run, in order to get from one venue to another in time. So busy I showed up to a lunch party yesterday and had to leave before food was served. I'm surrounded by hordes of people I like and respect, but my usual conversation is: "Hey, good to see you, but I've got to go."
Ultimately, I can't complain. I brought it all upon myself, agreeing to tech five shows a day (cockily asserting that I've done four in the past, and wanted to push myself). And I genuinely believe there are many other people here who have it much harder than me: the venue techs with late night comedy shows going on until 5am, the actors and comedians with multiple shows where they have to give 100% throughout, whereas I can drift onto autopilot between cues, and the street teams and flyerers, for whom bad weather isn't so much an inconvenience as a nightmare.
Anyway, before I send this off so I can look at it online with regret six months later, here are a few key DOs and DON'Ts for the festival:
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