Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Biographical Evolution

At the beginning of each show, I take time to sit down and revise my biography for the program, but instead of just adding the previous show I worked on to a list of credits, I try to find ways to make the bio personal.

I had to write my first bio for a show in university and it was not very cohesive or smooth, though it still had some personal touches to it. More it was about showing off that even though I was the new kid on the block, I had experience.

Lois is in her second year at TWU, pursuing a major in communications and minor in drama. Lois spent last year learning to appreciate the finer art of stage lighting during TWU's productions of The Mail Order Bride, Defying Gravity, Shadowlands, and Waiting for Godot. She has previously worked on numerous productions for 27th Street Theatre Company in Vernon, including stage managing Little Shop of Horrors and Hotline and assistant stage managing The Tuna Fish Eulogy, Interview and Something's Wrong with Ophelia. Lois is looking forward to working on many other productions in the future.

My third year of university (and five or six bios later), one of the professors decided to write all of the bios based on information they were given on a short sheet of paper. That bio is a little bit different - more a list of credits & things I wouldn't have been comfortable saying about myself.

Lois is a third year TWU student pursing a double major in Theatre and Communications. Recent credits include Cowgirls Gone Wild in the West (Wishbone Theatre), Disney's Beauty and the Beast (VCMS), The Heiress, Two Rooms, Steel Magnolias & Dr. Prescriptions Variety Hour Pt 1 (TWU), Little Shop of Horrors, Hotline, & Tuna Fish Eulogy (27th Street Theatre Company). Lois' skill and dedication will surely lead her into a career in stage management.
My bio for Holy Mo (which opens in 2 weeks) is my attempt to find the best of both worlds: a good variety of credits, while still incorporating the personal touches, and all in 85 words or less.

Lois loves her job as the resident stage manager at Pacific Theatre. It gives her a chance to combine her love for theatre with her compulsive need to organize things; skills she honed at Trinity Western University. Some of Lois' favorite PT credits include: A Bright Particular Star, Driving Miss Daisy, The Woodsman, Mourning Dove & Jesus, My Boy. When not at PT, Lois can be found stage managing dance shows & co-ops, watching her vast collection of TV on DVD or spending time with her delightful friends.

Every time I see a show, I read every bio in the program. Some are personal and only list one or two theatre credits, focusing instead on the person's life history while others are lists of only credits. While I think there is room for both of these different types of biographies to exist (and everything in between), I prefer to read the ones with a balance of the personal with credits, and that is also what I strive to write.


lindsay said...

Not to be completely off topic, but The Tuna Fish Eulogy you did, was that a ladder play about a dead boy by Lindsay Price? (cause that's me!)

SMLois said...

I think that would be your play Linsay :) Did it in high school. Look at us having connections.

Jocelyn said...

I made your bio as one of your "delightful friends!"

SMLois said...

True story Jocelyn :) That one is about to go to print...I could edit it to say "with her delightful friends (except Jocelyn)" ;)

Dr. Notto Nefarious said...

I hate writing bios ... now that I've had to post one for my theatre company, I cut and paste from it for EVERYTHING else.