The parks

The memories

The site

 

Practical Jokes & Things To Do On A 5 Show Day!

All about the shows, music, and performers at Marriott's GREAT AMERICA

Practical Jokes & Things To Do On A 5 Show Day!

Postby brdwyguy » Mon Jul 11, 2005 6:27 am

Can anyone relate some of the practical jokes that were played on people during their time in the Grand Music Hall.

Like for instance:

Silver Screen '78:
Playing Murder During the performance
we handed out cards to everyone in the show and whoever got the Queen of Spades was the murderer. That person had to murder everyone in the cast by winking at them ONSTAGE - not in the wings - before the end of the 45 minute performance! If you killed everyone you were the winner!

The time one of the BOYS dressed in the mermaid costume and got in the
side-stage - fishing tank! and performed as a mermaid.

Holiday '77:
The girls all ate a handful of ONIONS from the Employee Cafe - right next door -- just before we went on for the western section.

The girls all wore a mole on their right cheek! - the next performance the BOYS all wore a mole on their right cheek!

The time we ALL Blacked-out a Tooth in the hillbilly dance!

The time someone rolled a 4ft high tumbleweed across the stage during
the western section's Tumblin Tumbleweed Song.

would love to hear some of the antics that went on in later years!!!!!

Joey DiMarco (brdwyguy)



:roll:
User avatar
brdwyguy
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:15 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Postby TheDean » Mon Jul 11, 2005 9:58 pm

Hey Joey!

LOTS of gags, jolkes and games.... boy does this all take me back!

- Cotton Ball Tag... who ever was left with the cotton ball by the time last call was made, they bought everyone sodas on the break... yeah, "break", that's a good one! Ha!

- The Gumby Shows... boy is he flexable!

Great to have a place to remember!

You gunna be at the show-opps reunion? I JUST hear about it and I'm all over it!

Hope all is well!

I am at your servicve and In HIS Service,
Dean Hankey
<><
MGA Shows Alum: (Santa Clara)
1980 - 1984
- Street Fleet Lead Strolling Magic Performer!
- Snowshoe Saloon: Ol’ Doc Deano's Miracle Magic Medicine Review Show!"
- Theater Royal "It's A Magic World!"
- Grand Music Hall - "Happy Holidays!"
User avatar
TheDean
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Jul 11, 2005 9:50 pm
Location: Reno, Nevada

Postby BrianPlencner » Thu Jul 28, 2005 5:46 pm

Not really a "shows" gag, but it was a joke that was done over and over while I worked at the Gurnee park (1988-1992).

Like most places in the park, there was a phone in the employee cafe. The rule was that if you sat next to the phone, you had to answer it, figure out who the person wanted, what unit they worked for, and then see if they were in the cafe. That of course was done by yelling over the noise in the cafe. An example would be that Columbia was on the phone, looking for Jim, and the person answering the phone would go "Is Jim from Columbia here...you have a phone call".

But, as a joke, some of the employees that had been at the park for a number of years would go to another phone, and call the cafe, and say they were looking for someone from a ride that was no longer at the park. For example, in 1989 there were a few calls for Bob from Southern Cross, or Jill from ToC. :) I myself fell for it once, and after I said it, I caught myself, and busted out laughing along with everyone else! :D

Good times, good times.
===========================================
Mr. Brian Plencner
SFGAm Employee: 1988-1992
User avatar
BrianPlencner
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 209
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2005 8:07 pm
Location: Carpentersville, IL

Postby brdwyguy » Thu Jul 28, 2005 6:49 pm

:lol:
oh That's good!
User avatar
brdwyguy
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:15 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Postby Joe » Sun Aug 07, 2005 12:36 pm

In "Music! Music! Music!" at the Gurnee Park, there were several, short one-line solos written into the opening number. Someone bet that we couldn't change our solo lines into a recognizable melody written by Leonard Bernstein (keeping the "M3" lyric). My solo line was "Memphis in June". I changed the melody to a snippet from "The Jets Song" from West Side Story ("[The] Jets are in gear..."). It sounded horrible against the accompaniment tracks, but I won!

Another favorite at the Gurnee Park was to play "pass the jello" (sometimes it was a chocolate chip cookie). The object was to serrupticiously pass a square of jello amongst the cast members, onstage before the jello melted.
Gurnee casts of "Country Music Time!" and "Music! Music! Music!"
User avatar
Joe
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 12:14 pm

Postby brdwyguy » Sun Aug 07, 2005 1:35 pm

joe
you guys had tracks to sing with

we did that in Rye Playland's show in 79-80

i guess they added that years later
but up to that point everything was live!

jokes sound good! :)

we used to make-up dirty lyrics to many of the songs we would sing onstage
of course we would only sing them in the dressing rooms.
User avatar
brdwyguy
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:15 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Postby Joe » Sun Aug 07, 2005 2:19 pm

"M3" was the first show to use the tracks at the Gurnee park in 1981 (I believe the same was true for Santa Clara). The year prior was the last year for the full orchestra with "Music, America!" (the revival). It was about saving money, as I recall.

-Joe

PS: I did shows at Rye, Playland, too.
Gurnee casts of "Country Music Time!" and "Music! Music! Music!"
User avatar
Joe
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 12:14 pm

Re: Practical Jokes & Things To Do On A 5 Show Day!

Postby WvT3rd » Sun Sep 25, 2005 11:33 am

brdwyguy wrote:Can anyone relate some of the practical jokes that were played on people during their time in the Grand Music Hall.

Like for instance:

Silver Screen '78:


Of course, the crew got in on it too - for example - three words
Rubber Tree Plant :lol:
WvT3rd
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 11:43 pm
Location: Sillycon Valley, Ca.

Postby BroadwayBill » Mon Dec 12, 2005 10:57 pm

Practical Jokes onstage?

Silver Screen '78: Who could forget during the opener when Scott (as the director) would shout "Lights, Camera, Action!"? During one performance right after Scott shouted "ACTION" Mitch yelled "MAKEUP!" and hit Scott in the face with a huge powderpuff full of powder... which got into his contact lenses. Mitch almost got fired for that one.

Music America '79: Crazy Coif shows... everyone would go onstage with really bizarre hairdo's.

Broadway '80. Fast Shows... the conductor would play everything at a speeded up tempo... not easy to dance to. One time Patti Lyles walked across the stage during a blackout and poured a pitcher of water into the pit because the fast tempos were - her off.... and she got suspended for several days. For weeks everyone walked around saying "what water?" behind her back.
BroadwayBill
Gulf Coaster
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 10:36 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Postby Jeffbrown » Mon Jan 16, 2006 1:00 pm

Alas, poor Joey...

He would sit in a tall director's chair directly behind the main curtain at the opening of the show.

I remember one time when the techs preset his stool so one leg was resting on the curtain. When the curtain went up, his chair went flying backwards.

Of course, it was purely an accident! :roll:
Jeffbrown
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 12:56 pm

Postby brdwyguy » Mon Jan 16, 2006 1:39 pm

hey Jeff
i think your thinking of Scott Jones
he played the director in that opening seq of Silver Screen

i was the idiot in the Peter Pan/Robin Hood Green Tights
(i guess that is worse, huh?)

remember when the swing hit me in the head and cut my head open
and I had to be rushed to the hospital?
oh those were the days.


hehehehehehehe
Joey D
User avatar
brdwyguy
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:15 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

The other cast

Postby Jeffbrown » Mon Jan 16, 2006 2:02 pm

You're right, Joey, it wasn't you. It was Mitch in the other cast.

Amazing what 25 years will do to your mind!

Jeff
Jeffbrown
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 12:56 pm

Practical jokes

Postby TrptGuy » Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:37 pm

There were jokes in the orchestra -- sometimes at the expense of the actors.

On the lighter side, there was a chorale which changed key for every show...

In those days all mics had long cables on them (no wireless). Sometimes the cables would whip dangerously down into the pit. This would annoy the musicians if we felt it was due to carelessness. Thus, things would get attached before they were pulled back on stage -- like rubber chickens, condoms, etc.

Shows were every 90min. Supposed to be 50min show followed by 40min break. We would soon get tempos up such that we had 40min shows with 50min breaks. Then, Gene would fly into town and direct a show and bring the tempos back down.

Perhaps the cruelest stunt came one day to cure an "attitude" problem with a dancer. A particularly obnoxious understudy for a tap number would sub in once every few weeks. Did I mention that this guy was extremely obnoxious???!!! Well, near the end of the summer enough was enough and the orchestra waited for over a week for the spot to light on this guy on stage for this number. When it finally did, after his vocal chorus we accelerated tempo up 30% just in time for his tap solo chorus. I don't think he did the number again. Did I mention he was obnoxious to everyone???

I have nothing but fond memories of the shows at MGA. And, other than the "tap lesson" all the musicians loved the stage performers, wardrobe, the characters (who shared dressing area), etc. Looking forward to the reunion.

Pete
TrptGuy
Buzzy Bee
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:03 pm

Postby brdwyguy » Tue Jan 17, 2006 8:30 pm

i remember some of the fun things the orchestra did
for instance ------
the tap solo in Silver Screen had the hauntingly familiar sound of the pink panther theme (it was priceless)
we could never do that dance again without cracking up
User avatar
brdwyguy
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:15 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Postby BroadwayBill » Wed Jan 18, 2006 4:15 pm

I wonder which show and which "obnoxious" tap dancer got the fast tempo treatment. I remember that Music America had a Yankee Doodle Dandy tap solo usually performed by Todd Morgan. The funny thing was that the tapping was actually someone backstage tapping in front of a microphone. Todd would sometimes stop dancing, put his hand to his ear and listen to the taps coming from offstage. That always broke up the audience.
BroadwayBill
Gulf Coaster
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 10:36 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Next

Return to Shows

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron