I've been away for some time. Been working on some things and now they are pretty much finished. So....back here.
I saw Red Noses recently, and I definitely enjoyed it. The main thing that struck me about that show was the near-total absence of a set, which reinforced a personal mantra I've long held: Sets are nice, and they can definitely add to a show's production value. But they're a bit of a luxury, especially in today's brave new economic climate where every penny counts.
We've had some tremendous sets at the Factory over the years: Ren Faire, Dirty Diamonds, Among The Dead and Here Comes A Regular immediately spring to mind. But we've also had a ton of hits featuring sets that were makeshift at best: Alive, Being At Choice, White Trash Wedding And A Funeral, to name but a few. In fact, when the Factory was on Loyola Ave., pretty much all our sets were but a suggestion. Hell, for a few years we had one of our spotlights functioning from inside of a Folger's coffee can. Many area high schools probably had higher "production values" than the Factory at the time. Yet we brought the people in and made a little money in the process. That's because the scripts were strong and the acting and direction even stronger. In my mind, that's 90% of the battle right there.
I say this for no other reason than to spark a bit of a discussion here on the Factory blog. Is a good set that superfluous? Or is it necessary to raise the profile of a production and create a mood that goes beyond "gritty storefront"? I turn this over to you, the Factory blogosphere.....