Tips for “show weekend”(28 Posts)
My very determined 4 year old is in a show in a few weeks time. She’s astonished me by keeping up with the rehearsals, now I am thinking ahead to show weekend.
There will be a dress rehearsal till late on Thursday, show till late on a Friday, and two shows on Saturday...
Just wondering if anyone has any tips on things to pack etc to help her manage.
I’ve booked some days off work either side so she can totally relax, and nap as needed. Wondering what else I can do. She’s so driven, but still so young and I want to look after her as much as I can. But I don’t know anything about shows!
Don’t pack anything that might get spilled or anything which might make marks of any kind on costumes! Electronic devices come into their own backstage I always find. There can be a lot of waiting around. A onesie for putting on in between stage times is helpful too.
Oh, and more (non-messy) food than you can imagine. In my experience dancers eat an enormous amount (just assuming she’s a dancer here)
Musical theatre (so dancing and singing, she’s too tiny for a speaking part)
Non messy food is a good point, will get her to help me draw up a list of snacks etc.
Was thinking onesie or dressing gown maybe for between (as she would struggle to get into a onesie by herself)
iPad could be good plan. Do you reckon i should check with her teacher before sending it? She’s going to have a fair bit of waiting around I expect, she’s not normally a big user of tablets/ tv (she’s an exhausting extrovert) but it might mean she gets a bit of downtime.
I feel really nervous for her! But she’s been counting down to this since the summer
She’ll love it. I’m the one who still gets nervous each time either of mine are on stage but they’ve never had nerves. Check with the teacher about the iPad but I would think lots of the kids will bring them.
That makes me feel better there’s part of me that wants to scoop her up and cradle her like a baby and carry her home whenever I drop her off but she is so determined to do it!
You’re right though, I’ll probably still be the same in 10 years time
Depending on how much time she is on stage, she will either have lots of time to fill, or very little time to do much. Lots of snacks rather than planned 'meals' work well. Lots of drink - preferably in proper non-spill bottles that easily spilled cartons etc. Things to do - electronic things (fully charged) if allowed, colouring ( pencils rather than pens), stickers, simple games. I presume the children will be chaperoned back stage so she will be helped with any problems. Something easy to slip over her costume if she wants a quick drink/snack is always useful to prevent accidents.
Yes, they have chaperones etc. But she’s the youngest by a couple of years, and very determined to be as self sufficient as the others.
I think she’ll have a fair bit of downtime as she’s only in about 1/3 of the show I reckon. But she does have a costume change etc which should keep her fairly busy at times.
Okay, if she's the only one under 5yo, her regulations are slightly different to the rest of the 5-16yos, so she may need to be looked after slightly differently.
Maximum number of hours in theatre is 5 (as opposed to 8 for 5-9yos), she has to be out of the theatre by 10pm (as opposed to 11pm) maximum amount of continuous rehearsal/performance is 30 minutes ie time on stage (2.5 hours), maximum amount of performance without a break is 2 hours (3 hours)
Mine have all done panto from aged 5yo and that used to be dress rehearsal Wednesday, Performances Thursday, Friday, 2x Saturday. But the adrenalin carries them through and they don't seem to have any issues. It tends to be the Sunday afternoon afterwards they're awful as the let down comes.
Check what they're allowed for snacks-we only allow water, and no chocolate. That's mostly because of costumes, although we tell them chocolate effects their voices (it does). If you've ever had 10 minutes to get chocolate milkshake out of a Sound-of-Music white sailor costume you will appreciate this.
Raisins are great, sandwiches with non-messy filling are great for more substantial snack.
Also check what electronics they're allowed. Our council recommends you don't let them have electronics backstage due to photos and bullying on messages. We do allow them, but they're regulated (not in the dressing room, just in the waiting room).
At that age, sticker books are great (no mess), or beads or a small game to play- no felt tips for costume reasons. They may like a scrap book to get everyone to sign their names etc, or a programme to do that in also works well. If she has a soft toy to take along as a mascot, that's great too, but please make sure she's aware it must stay in the dressing room. As a chaperone you can't run back to fetch it from the side of the stage easily necessarily, and tears because you have to leave it in the dressing room is something I've had to deal with before. (and then tears because we let them and they left it at the side of the stage)
Between the performances on Saturday get her off site for a break, even if it's briefly walk round the block. They do need it-even I need it as a chaperone.
If you're doing the make-up then take the spare with you. I've had a few times where I've had to make a decision whether to remove the extra lipstick which is coating about an inch round the lips that they've decided to apply themselves after their mum has done it for them. It's a tough one because again they can be upset if you want to take it off, otoh you don't want the audience wondering why there apparently is a clown on stage with the woodland creatures.
If you do need to leave it, then make sure they ask if they think they need more on rather than doing it themselves.
Have fun and she'll love it!
That’s loads of really helpful information, thank you witchend
I am anticipating a big crash afterwards so booked some time off work.
Luckily she has a dance school show in the summer so she will at least have something new to look forward to!
I cannot imagine the stress of dealing with removing milkshake from a white costume!
My dd(3) is about to do her second show and she has a really useful box with a a4 head shot on it with her name and my telephone number on the bottom I chaperone and it's amazing how many of the littlies lose the ability to tell the chaperone their name.
Then she has:
Bobbles in the same colour as her hair
Hair spray - name labelled
Brush - name labelled
Make up, wipes and brushes all labeled
Spare change of clothes and toilet wipes
Reading and colouring books - no felts
Tablet and head phones
Snacks: nuts, ritzy biscuits, apple chunks, Cereal bars, banana
Drink - water or flavoured water
Then any other bring from home costume requirements from the studio so this year is black leggings
Oh thank you! Show is this weekend so am just starting to worry a bit more! Good call on labelling everything!
I am chaperoning some of the performances /rehearsals now but not sure if I will be in her room or not.
Think I will buy her some headphones as well. That’s a good idea, no one else wants to listen to Peppa pig
Glad it’s not just my child doing shows so young. At the chaperones meeting one mum gasped in horror when she found out there was a 4 year old performing . All the drive comes from DD, she’s beyond excited!
My dd had a ball doing her first show she was just 2.
The atmosphere back stage was lovely when the tots came off stage the other groups from aged 5 - 18 were waiting for them and were clapping them and high fived them all telling them they'd done brilliantly!
It was such a good experience for my dd and she can't wait to get back on stage in the upcoming show
With the labelling thing I work on the rule if it is likely to be detached from dd it's labeled get some shoe labels from mine4sure it's worth it to avoid replacing tap shoes at 25.00 a pop
Yeah my Dd lives to be on stage! (She doesn’t get it from me!). She has only done smaller scale stuff like holiday workshops before though, so this is a big step up.
OP - if you are chaperoning, then you will need to take paracetamol or ibuprofen and some
gin water, for the headache you will definitely get at some point!!!
Wear black clothes, and black shoes, preferably comfortable, quiet non-squeaky ones, so you can be in the wings and stay unseen and unheard.
Oh, and take as many hair bobbles, nets, hair grips and pins as you can lay your hands on - it really helps to have a secret stash
If your little one will wear make up for the show make sure you have wipes in so you get the make up off quickly before bed!
My DD was in a show on the 1st & 2nd and had another one yesterday!
@kinorsam that’s a good point, I always get a headache when I help with my son’s school trips
@megabeth good reminder! Have stuck a huge pack of wipes in her bag now. Not sure if she is wearing make up or not but better to have them ready!
The final rehearsal and shows all finish at 9-10 in the evening, so I was planning on her changing into PJs after the show (in case she nods off in the car) but worry I will embarrass her if she is the only one in Pjs?
When my 8 yr old DD does panto it shows I routinely put her in a onesie for arriving and leaving anyway but I definitely put her in jammies at the end... I wouldn’t worry about doing the same for your DD. I hope she loves it! Xx
Even my 14 year old son takes his onesie to the theatre to change into.
oh that makes me feel better! She’s very conscious (sometimes) that she’s youngest one, so I didn’t want to draw attention to that and have her the only one in PJs! but I am half expecting her to be asleep when we get home!
Thank you so so much for all the advice on here!! It made me feel a lot more prepared! DD had an absolutely wonderful time, she was buzzing after each time she went on stage. I found being a chaperone pretty overwhelming but it was also amazing to see that even the tiniest girls were all there because it was what they wanted to do, not because they were being pushed to. Very glad I brought huge stacks of baby wipes with me!!
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