Archive | August, 2011

Where have we been? Into the “Tech” of It!

9 Aug

This weekend we entered into the Technical Rehearsal process for A Man Comes to Fowler. During “tech” rehearsal, we add costumes, lights, sound and shadow puppets to the production. Below check out some of the photos of the team in Panzak Park.

Puppeteers in the Shadow Box

The ladies of the play and Michael Jackson

The young cast and the Child Supervisor, Siobhan

Technical team in scaffolding


Brunch at the Masumoto Farm:Picking Nectarines

4 Aug

I-8 Students at the Peach Farm

Here at the Cornerstone Institute we have 3 days off in 4 weeks. I’m sure you can imagine how precious these days are to us! Monday was our 2nd day off, and it was amazing! We had been invited by the wonderful Masumoto family to their Orchard, to pick nectarines and have brunch. We arrived and gathered under the tree’s as Nikiko Masumoto shared with us the history of the farm and her desire to continue the family business. Her dedication to the farm, passion for the work and family values are inspiring. It’s clear to see that she is where she is meant to be.

Mary and the Nectarine

The Masumoto family had generously donated a tree to Cornerstone Theater Company, so away we went to pick our nectarines! Mas Masumoto gave us a brief lesson in ‘how to pick the perfect nectarine’ Within the next 45 minutes we had 4 boxes full of delicious nectarines to bring back to Cornerstone HQ (I’m writing this blog on Tuesday and in the past day I have had 4 nectarines and delicious nectarine smoothie!)

Nikki SM Picking Nectarines

After this hot and sweaty work a delicious brunch awaited us. Sweet biscuit, peach jam, potatoes, sausages, watermelon,  ice tea, orange juice, and coffee. I sat amongst the peach tree’s eating and thinking how delightful and quaint this experience was.
After buying masumoto peach t-shirts and receiving cute little jars of  jam we left the idyllic land of peaches and returned home for naps and swimming.
We would all like to say a massive thank you to he brilliant Masumotos for their overwhelming kindness, hospitality and generosity. Never again will I eat a peach or nectarine without thinking of that Monday morning.


Necturines we picked


4 Aug

On Sunday, July 31, the designers and Cornerstone team members were treated to the first run-through of the entire play, A Man Comes to Fowler.  Director Laurie Woolery had warned the cast and audience alike that this would be more like a “stumble-through,” since it was the cast’s first attempt to perform without stopping, but there was no need to manage our expectations.  It was quite exciting to see this play take shape after little more than a week’s worth of rehearsals.

Before we began, set and puppet designer Lynn Jeffries (assisted by Birdie and Amy) did a show and tell of some of the puppet scenes for the cast and crew. Although we were watching a modified version of the projection effects, the intricate designs of antique cars, historic homes, and whimsical storytelling devices were vibrantly clear.  I’m anticipating that the shadow puppets will be one of the highlights of the production.

The cast is already performing like a well-established ensemble, evident in moments of singing from the choir and the entire company, as well as a rhythmic and dance-like sequence of grape harvesting that accompanies a poem by Jose Montoya. The play tells the history of Fowler and a stranger’s encounter with the town. There were moments of sheer fun and joy, as well as poignant scenes, particularly those recounting the internment of Fowler’s Japanese-Americans during WWII. Many in the cast and crew were moved by the rehearsal, and we’re all excited to see the play develop in the coming week as we further work each scene and begin adding production elements like costumes, sound, and lights.