Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A "light" post about ONSTAGE SAFETY. By Crystal Precious

Wow... 4 days later and I'm still a bit shaken. I think its time to share this. Onstage accidents: they are a thing.

First-up I'm fine, everyone is safe and ok. But I'm posting this story for two reasons. The kinda selfish reason, if I'm being honest, is because I'm hoping it will help dillute my shaken-ness a bit, the way sharing sometimes does. Like truth, puhlayyyse, not goin' lie about that. 

The less selfish and more important reason is to ask that you PLEASE PLEASE remember to DOUBLE CHECK that stage areas are secure, especially pop-up or alternative venue stage areas. This is not just the responsibility of the venue or stage crew... it is also performers' responsibility. So many times we will go into a tech run and scope out the area for sound, lights, choreo or prop capacities but not necessarily to look for the safety concerns. Please let this story remind you not to take those things for granted and not to take any chances. Here's what happened. 

So this weekend the Sweet Soul grrlz and I were lucky enough to do a show in a gorgeous venue with giant picture windows surrounding the room. We were on a standard 3' raised pop-up stage floor tucked into one of the corners of the room, which coincidentally lined up flush to the bottom of said giant picture windows. We were 4 stories up, but each storey had 15 foot ceilings, so actually it was more like 6 or 7 stories up. We had beautiful views of the city as our backdrop, which I loved. Great idea. 

It was a super fun crowd, and I was getting into it with cracking jokes, rapping, dancing, etc. and pointing out the view, much the same way as when I'm hosting and performing at the Keefer Bar. And much like with THEIR giant side-flushed picture window, I decided on a whim mid-show to use one of the windows as part of a joke, and went to lean against it. THANK EFF the grrls sidestage were in the exact right position to see my mistake and quickly yell out “NOOOO!!! STOPPPPPPP!!”

I stopped dead in my heels, literally inches away from leaning onto a window that was not only unlocked, but was also a teensy fraction of an inch ajar. Literally if I had stepped forward it would have pushed it RIGHT OPEN and seen me falling a hundred or more of feet below.

HOLY. SHIT. And or those of you who know how NOT a fan of heights I am... double HOLY. SHIT. Of course in the moment my performer instinct was to crack a joke and carry on, then process after, but I'm not going to lie, this gave me a really good scare. Trust: all the gratitude. Close call.

Sooo I think the lesson is that as the DIY performance community expands and we appear in more and more underground or pop-up spaces, let's double check on shit like this, even if that seems like the most obvious thing ever. Let this be your reminder to please INSIST (politely) that cracks be taped, rolling pieces or stairs be braked properly, hot lights be safe distance, that cables are backlined, that your aerial rigging is pro-rated. Throw a flashlight in your bag so you can see where you're going backstage if it's dark. WAIT until water or slippery glitter is properly swept from the stage. Don't push it with the heel height. Trust, it's worth it. 

To my angels --- and my grrls -- hearts.


OH YEAH. Also, PS: MY STRIPHOP EP CAME OUT!!! For those who enjoy rapping burlesque grrrlz, grab it!

Download the EP:

Link to the release info:

I'm uploading one track a day this week to my Soundcloud. Here's the first one!

Thanks so much to Fubarfoto for the amazing photos for the rollout... kisses. xoxo