JAMES CRAIG PHOTOGRAPHY

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Another Peek into Rehearsals for Rogue Swan's Upcoming Vaudeville at the Opera House

May 2, 2019

Preview performance in the street First Friday at 7 in front of Josephs and the Art Room… It’s all coming together at the rehearsals. The shot above was taken after hours at Concord Point Coffee where this rehearsal was held. Almost a month to go before the performance and already the energy being put into the numbers and skits is exhausting to watch. We have been to a goodly number of events at the Opera House, including the popular musicals. We've seen everything from polite applause though sporatic standing applause, sometimes leading to standing ovations. But rarely do you see what Rogue Swan received at last year's performance – many were on their feet before the rousing end of the final number. And from what I've been allowed to see from this year's show, and the way it will build, I can assure you that this will be the case once again.

Performances are May 24 and 25. Tickets are available at the Opera House or on line HERE. We usually like to sit in back, but would probably prefer further forward for this – but I'll be stuck behind the last row shooting for the cast – very glad to have some foreknowledge of what is coming up next. Nan and a friend will be right in front of me. Get your tickets early, pick you seats by using the map on line. While there will assuredly be great performances at the Opera House this year (we already have tickets for some), Rogue Swan's Vaudeville – Last Call will be some of the most fun you can have with your clothes on all year.

Oh, I almost forgot – First Friday at 7, across from Josephs and the Art Room, someof the Rogue Swan cast will join The Hush Down to give a little taste of what is coming (probably some music – there's a tight lid on some of the skits).

Update: in case of rain, this First Friday event will be held in Joseph’s Department Store…

More Portraits from the Rehearsal Shoot They get the color JPGs while I get to mine the RAW files for B&Ws like this:

What good is a blog without honest reflection. After all, in the end, this will be more of a PDF diary for my own use than anything else. At the end of this shoot I was exhausted – it had been a long day that included mowing grass and a quick shower before the real work began at about seven. So as I stood there in front of the troop rehearsing a big number, all lined up, I got lazy and plunked myself down on a very convenient chair. Did I mention I was tired. This left me photographing individuals in the lineup facing up with a wide angle lens. Well, that didn't work out well at all – for the most part. In fact, the results were mostly so bad that they hit the trash very quickly so as to not hurt anyone's feelings – or bring me bodily harm.

BUT it seems that this angle and lens combination doesn't make quite everyone look like they are in a horror movie. Look at Jessie Gordon here above, mid song. The last shot of the evening that I kept. I haven't heard back from her about the other image I posted of her from a previous rehearsal HERE – I've been afraid to ask. Of all my portraits, it's one of my favorites – it's just that most people want to be photographed to make themselves look gorgeous rather than so vulnerable. Maybe this one will make her feel more comfortable with that one.

Finally, I've been trying to sneak a shot of Lilli Burril, the force that manages the group, letting them concentrate on their performances. Problem there is that she's always observing and thinking. You can see the wheels turning in her head at all times. The image above pretty much says it all – her signature look, concentration. Nan says Lilli's expression reminds her of the Mona Lisa, not giving anything away. Her hair is red, red. thus the striking highlights in B&W – the big reason the vast majority of Hollywood female stars before color movies were redheads.

Again, check out the Havre de Grace Street page for larger, downloadable versions…


P.S. iPhone Burst Shooting in RAW – Now that's interesting…

It's to become my new default way to shoot on the iPhone. I don't use flash, so low light shooting can sometimes be a matter of taking a half dozen shots, holding as still as possible – or bracing the phone, in order to assure a stable exposure. Fortunately Camera+ 2 – my go-to camera app – has programmed their burst shooting setting to expose for RAW. Instead of firing off a number of separate shots – with the resultant risk of movement, I can simply leave my finger on the buton for three or four exposures – in RAW + JPG. My trials show this helps reduce the incidence of shake, especially in those times in low light with nothing to brace the darn thing on. Plus, it's kind of fun.