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Up in the air

From YVR > YYC > YOW > FLL > SJU > PUJ > MIA > PBI > DTW > PHL > CLT > ORD > PHX > SEA > SFO > LAX > PDX > JFK > LGA > ATH > FRA > STN > LHR > ..and back! >YVR:

*phew* That’s a lot of airports!  And a lot of mobility, which has played a big part in my recent world of work for these past 18 months with Showtime Pictures.

It began innocently enough, with an interview in Vancouver for a part-time gig as a photographer for a show that was rolling through town.   But within very short order, I found myself accepting the offer of employment for the Tour Manager and Supervisor for the entire photography subcontract for ‘Cirque du Soleil’s’ North American touring production of ‘CORTEO’.  I had no idea what I had just signed up for, but it sounded ‘fun’ and of course Creative Type that I am (mostly signifying perpetual searching for the next paid gig), I was ready and looking forward to a regular paycheck once again.

Working alongside CDS was
how shall I sayvery "interesting" and insightful.  I picked up the tour in Vancouver as we made our way across Canada with our final stop of the tour in balmy Miami, Florida.  And what a whirlwind tour it was!   We ran 9-10 shows a week in each city, with most stops along the itinerary being average 8-10 weeks.  With my new-found title came many new responsibilities, some which I naturally expected, some coming as a total surprise.  I was charged to hire and train all staff for each city which entailed organizing adverts for interviews, interviewing candidates for a couple of days, hiring and training them in the ways of Showtime Pictures and Cirque du Soleil, along with overseeing every single performance to ensure our contract and mandate was fulfilled.   To that end, I interviewed over 100 possible candidates for the duration of the tour, and personally hired approximately 80 people (It’s approximate since I can’t remember them all, and the turnover in some cities became quite problematic with rehiring and retraining midstream).   I thank Cirque for their benevolence in giving us all a "Dark day"—when there is no scheduled show—which was Monday for our tour.  The rest of the time and the rest of the days were filled with shows and thousands of Cirque fans and attendees coming and going not unlike the frenzy of a busy airport terminal.   We always had 6 shows back to back starting early Friday afternoon, and ending at 10:30pm Sunday evening by which time I was completely exhausted and my staff looked ready to jump off the nearest bridge!

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