Requirements for Booking a Show
Here's what we need to provide the best possible performance for your group
An actual theatrical stage is something of a rarity for most organizations. If you are in the lucky minority, this will answer almost all of the production issues. Next best is a raised platform at one side of your meeting space. An elevation of 12 - 18 inches will ensure that even viewers at the rear of the audience will have an unobstructed view. If no stage is available, you may wish to consider renting a portable platform from a local dealer; these are usually available in sizes from 3 ft x 3 ft and 4 ft x 4 ft and larger, and multiple units may be combined. A combined area of 4 x 8 ft or larger will be ideal; even a 3 x 6 ft platform would be adequate. Many such platform modules have adjustable leg height: 12 inches would be adequate, 18 inches would be better (but will also necessitate a step).
For stage-less venues to which Jenny is traveling by car, she can bring her own “portable” platforms (one 4x4 and one 4x3); but these are extremely heavy and cumbersome -- and generally regarded as an emergency measure.
If you are setting up a modular platform -- or arranging the room to accommodate one -- be sure to place it opposite the doorway into the room, so audience members who arrive late or leave early will cause the least disturbance. If a large dining room is to be used, the stage should also be as far as possible from doors used by the kitchen staff and food servers.
If other business is to be conducted before Jenny's presentation -- such as a dinner or a business meeting -- we may require access to the area well in advance to set up and test equipment. (Unless you are providing all such equipment and can have it pre-set.)
Digital Projector, Computer, PowerPoint, Projection Screen
The programs featuring Georgia O’Keeffe, Mary Cassatt and Lilla Cabot Perry include digital projections. If your organization already has a digital projector, it was probably selected with illumination power and lens magnification appropriate for your venue. The images for Jenny's programs will be contained in a PowerPoint file. Ideally, this file will be copied from a flash drive or CD to your computer’s hard drive, ensuring that it plays smoothly. Jenny will use a wireless remote (yours or hers) to trigger the slides.
If you have no projector, Jenny will bring her own projector (Dell #2400MP) and Mac PowerBook. A projection stand or cart, or a small table, will be needed to position the projector and laptop about 20 feet from the screen. The screen should be placed to one side of the performance area, positioned so that no light falls on it while a spotlight and other available lighting is directed at Jenny.
Lights and Lighting
In the absence of an actual theatrical stage, the performing area must have controllable lighting. For a daytime show, can windows be curtained or otherwise blocked? Can general room lighting be turned off? (And who will be responsible for it?) Can any lights aimed at the performing area be individually controlled, so Jenny can be illuminated while the projection screen is not?
For performances to which Jenny will be traveling by car, she can also bring pole-mounted spotlights which can be placed at the rear of the audience to assist in illuminating the performance space. Although these powerful lights are very helpful, they may not be adequate as the only illumination.
Acoustics in non-theatrical spaces such as meeting halls and dining rooms are generally rather poor, calling for voice amplification to ensure that all audience members can hear every word. For most presentations a lavaliere microphone or body mic is the preferred type; a lavaliere can be attached to costume lapels and body mic hidden in the hair, with the associated battery pack hidden under the costume. For the Lindbergh program, a stand mic or one attached to a lectern is preferred, since the nature of that program is an author's presentation.
In any case, the microphone requires an associated amplification system, typically the responsibility of your organization's A-V department.
If you do not have such a system, and the hall to be used is a large one, you will need to consider renting something appropriate from a local audio-visual supplier.
A private area is needed for getting into costume and makeup, preferably adjacent to the performance space. If an actual dressing room is not available, perhaps a nearby women's restroom can be commandeered.
A brief introduction for each program is available for your speaker or program chair. It may be used as is, or adapted to your situation; but any introduction should always begin with a firm reminder to turn off all cell phones and prohibit photography during the performance.
Can I afford a program by Jenny Aldrich?
Probably. A hundred other groups, large and small, have enjoyed her programs. But let's be honest: not every group that would enjoy these presentations can afford them. So you're going to have to contact Jenny by form or by phone (941-735-1260) and discuss it.