This year’s props summit was a rousing success. With over forty people in attendance, we more than doubled the attendance from last year. Upon entering, one person exclaimed, “I didn’t know there were so many props people!” In fact, if you look at the picture from the first props summit, you’ll notice quite a few people who were unable to make it back this year; there are also some who were invited but too busy to make it to either summit so far. In other words, this summit still has the chance of growing in attendance.
Though this event was focused around New York City, we had folks come from Long Island, New Jersey, Connecticut, and even Boston! The great thing about this event is that all types of props people attended: prop masters, both full-time and freelance, carpenters, artisans, and every combination in-between. What’s great about getting to know your friendly neighborhood props people is that it lets you know you are not alone, and other people are going through the same things as you, and you’re probably not crazy (or we’re all crazy, and getting together just deludes us to that fact). It also helps you out when you’re in a bind; if you can’t find that one strange prop, or you need someone who can sew leather, or you have a great prop left over from a show but no place to store it, these are the people who can help you out.
Whenever a large-enough group of new people arrived, we would go around the circle and introduce ourselves, which led to stories being swapped. Later in the evening, Jay led everyone in a rousing reading of Ron DeMarco’s “Resolutions”. Ron teaches props at Emerson College, and tried to find the perfect script for his students to develop a props list from. Unable to locate such a script, he wrote his own; “Resolutions”, though only four pages long, contains many of the typical prop challenges and questions, and quite a few conundrums as well. Most of the time, though, was spent in simple drinking, eating, mingling and chatting.
I would list everyone who attended, but I’m afraid I might leave someone out. My only regret was that I was unable to speak with everyone there, particularly those I haven’t met yet. If you are interested in attending next year’s summit (or sooner, though it took us a whole year before we had this one), drop me a line.