Albert Herring has a number of expendable food items that are consumed by the performers and need to be replaced for every show. Variables that determine what real food items are used include the action, staging, set design, and a performer’s dietary restriction or personal preference.
During the rehearsal process food items and quantities needed for each performance are determined. An expendable food list containing the items needed for each scene, how the food is used and all other relevant information is compiled by a Stage Manager and managed by the Props Coordinator.
Prop lemonade bottles are filled with sugar-free lemonade
Before each performance fresh food items are purchased by a production assistant and the food is prepared for the performance by a union Prop Master in a small kitchen backstage.
Produce and hot foods in the backstage kitchen
In the Grocer’s Shop scene the action requires real peaches, apples, cucumbers and turnips. These real fruits and vegetables are mixed in with the artificial produce onstage.
The Grocer's scene
In the May Day Festival scene the singers drink lemonade and eat an assortment of finger foods including sausage rolls, ham sandwiches and cupcakes.
The May Day scene
Extra whip cream icing is added to Albert’s cupcake to support the action of the May Day scene.
Cupcakes and marshmallow “taffy”
In the final scene the saltwater taffy is replaced with marshmallows wrapped in parchment paper to alleviate the noise made by the original hard candy hitting the floor.
The Final scene