Various and Sundry

When You Can’t Stage Your Play in a Meat Freezer…

While not necessarily my favorite aspect of stagecraft at the moment of assignment, some of my fondest memories of being a stage technician involve props. There is often an inherent playfulness and ingenuity in a prop solution that is amplified by the fact that actors get to handle them… and that joy is seen on stage.

The fact that prop solutions often require ingenuity may explain my apprehension (at the assignment) and subsequent elation (assuming I solved the problem), because one has to get through the inevitable “How the @#$% do I do this?” stage. The professional prop makers I’ve seen have transformed that anxiety-ridden question into “Which method to I try first?” or “Can I do this (because that would be cool)?” And that’s a heck of a lot more fun… and those are solutions I love to read or watch videos about.

So, with that in mind, here’s an article on theatrical supplier Rosco’s website all about making convincing pieces of meat. And we’re not just talking about a chicken drumstick or two: we’re talking whole sides of beef… that can be in dance number!

The article gives you plenty of pictures and information about how they approached making the faux meat (using Rosco products, of course). In some ways, I want more nitty gritty bloody details about exactly how they did all of this, but if reading the article makes you want to start figuring out how to carve and paint foam yourself, you just might be a prop maker.

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