Rose is charismatic and variable performer, injecting her soul into all her characters and with her own style of performance and visual storytelling she renders entertaining moments that may charm your heart, invoke laughter, anger or new ideas, but will never leave you cold.
Burlesque itself does not mean just work for Amy – it means joy of creative art – positive feelings which she wishes to share with her audience. Audiences love Amy and she loves her audiences. Amy is not easily descriped, she is better to be experiened.
1 What’s the hardest thing you have ever been asked to do?
The hardest one was something that I actually didn´t know in advanced. Years ago I was stage kittening in Turku Burlesque Weekend and one of the headliners was this really amazing performer, Lilly SnatchDragon/ Lilly S Johnson. At that time Lily was a new experience for me and using word experience, because of her “English Breakfast” act. In case you haven´t seen this routine… Imagine small children sized wading pool on stage. Imagine tray containing 2 cans of beans with sauce, 1 liter of orange juice, raw eggs, raw sausages, raw bacon, ketchup, Worcester or HP sauce, tomatoes, 1 big teapot full of tea (Oh boys and girls would I had got her smaller one to borrow if I´d known…) not sure did she also had toast, could be but in the end toast did not really matter anymore in the big picture.Anyhow – she truly delighted in her “breakfast” – by pouring, smashing, squeezing, throwing – all over herself and in to the wading pool, from pool it flood to the stage… But that wasn´t just it, she also asked “help” from audience for squeezing the sauce on her and of course had some eager assistance. Beyond my wildest dreams, most memorable performance indeed, which I probably would have liked even more, if being member of audience. Took me hole break between sets to clean up that breakfast from stage but I managed get it done on half an hour. Busiest half an hour ever because you know how there cannot be anything slippery like liquids on stage? But must say that if I handled that experience I think I can probably handle just about anything when “stage kittening”.
2 Why do you love stage management
It is like being “secret conductor” of the show, specially because audience hardly ever (and they are not supposed to) see or know what is going on behind the curtains, during the events. Sometimes on smaller shows or clubs stage kitten and stage manager is the same person. For me stage managing is one of the most important duties on show because I´m making sure everything goes as smoothly as possible – for the audience but also for performers and everyone else involved. Making sure that show goes on as scheduled, taking care of performers and sharing information with technical crew plus stage kitten(s). There are so many little details to put together for the big picture and something can always go wrong. Every event is unique show and every producer has own different styles of organizing. It is kind of hard to explain, easiest way to put it is that I love my job, otherwise I would not be doing it.
3 What are the top 3 tips you would give a new stage manager starting out.
1. Get as much info as you can, in advanced. That gives for you an extra time to be prepared and when you have got everything sorted and in order for your own thoughts, at the time being you can better concentrate on what is happening in that moment and in hand. I guess I take seriously any task (big or small) on production, so being advanced is a bit like getting ready for exam.This works for me and it is just the tip. When you get more shows done, you´ll find your own routines.
2. Be on time in venue. Before stage rehearsal. Because you are in charge (among many other things) of schedule “time is running” on the back stage. This also gives you a little time to check how to access to on/off stage, possible stairs or other difficult routes with heels and costume on, backstage, bathrooms in back stage (hopefully there is one). And even if you know all this already, just be in time.
3. You are sort of “the hen mother” of backstage, so you can be strict while keeping everything in order but you are also kind of keeping up nice vibes and good, positive attitude with the hole big picture, behind the scenes. For sure, not everybody love each other and performers can be nervous before their gig. Everyone is different and has their own ways to prepare themselves. Most of them are professionals and they know back stage life and remember manners in there but sometimes not. If they don´t know how to behave, respect you and every one else there, it is usually that they have no experience of other duties involved in shows but their own “5 minutes on stage”. Patience my dear, that´s life and you are there for them for just that while.
4 What is your go to checklist? –
Performers/Running order/ Set lists – anything changed or needs to be changed? Like if two performers happen to have same music and they are supposed to go on stage one after another. – Be on time, on stage rehearsal and go through things with stage kittens.- Talk to crew/staff, find out who is responsible of what (if not familiar yet) – Check that there is at least water to drink in backstage. Don´t forget straws. Check bathrooms (enough toilet paper). – Be presence, be ready just for anything. I usually have a little “first aid kit” with me, containing things like tassel tape/glue, also for lashes, band-aid, needle and line for emergency costume preparing, small scissors, pain killers, “ladies monthly”, pen(s) and paper etc. Plus everything else mentioned previously.
5 What do you alter for different shows?
Alterations are usually about size of event and/or venue size. I think it is pretty much same job nevertheless. If I know performers in advanced, (meaning I have seen their routines before) it always makes things easier when giving advice for example to stage kittens. Smaller clubs or events are not always that tightly scheduled, so “tick tock says a o´clock” is not based on minutes like on some bigger events. Sometimes venue can start charging extra, if show goes “after time” of agreement made. You know, it is not only the show, quite often venue needs to be empty (and cleaned) in certain time.
If you are staying until “closed and done” it is always good idea to check backstage because things might still appearing there even if everyone is gone. It is a kind of magic.
6 What are the best tips and tools for a stage manager.
Sleep well and rest enough before the show. Have flat and comfortable shoes on (you can have another pair and also heels with you in case you need them) and even if you have really fancy evening gown, you might want to wear something stylish but more comfortable to move with. Drink water or another non-alcoholic beverage for hydration and take something to eat with you, small snack like peanuts, dried fruits, raisins etc. to keep your blood sugar and energy level up. Keep calm and burlesque on – You can do it!.
7 Whats the main differences / problems between managing a normal show compared to a festival.
Again it is entirety. To think that problems are just issues to be taken care of and hoping that anything out of my hands/force major situations does not happen. Festival means more performers, usually bigger venue and more crew members. So one must adjust for much busier times ahead. There has been lots of work done in advanced and information given but unfortunately not everyone is remembering timetable or other “smaller details”. You might feel like parrot repeating yourself but at least you are “the best parrot in the vessel”.
8 How do you deal with glitter?
Okay, you have those small flakes (sparkling **it) on your routine? Now tell me – is that absolutely necessary? Does “throwing” glitter around give something, so amazingly unbeatable experience for the audience that they just cannot live without? ( Me being sarcastic here
😉 ) If you wish to use glitter on inside of your gloves or somewhere else and we cannot change running order (like you´d be last one of set), – Oh well *shrug*. Then dear stage kittens are needing a little extra time for cleaning, so host must make that time for them. Luckily hosts usually like and can talk. ( I must make confession, since one of my routines includes lots of glitter. It is presenting blood but I tend to go on the very edge of the stage so that most of it falls off stage. )Dealing with glitter is important because it is very slippery and we don´t want to anyone wipe out, fell down and get injured. For my experience those kind of “static”, disposable cleaning rugs will “suckle” glitter quite well, but if you haven´t got those or short with time, hopefully you have good floor brush for the first aid and during the break you can clean stage more better. PS. Please, do not use glitter meant for crafting anywhere near by your eyes! Just cosmetic glitter to avoid injures.