Getting Back Into The Theatrics of Theatre

Working My Way Back Into Black

My story of the theatrical rush of working in theater.


Before summer began and I was still at college, I was trying to figure out what exactly to do with my summer. I had figured it was probably too late for a summer internship and a feeling of defeat made it more difficult to apply to more places if I was only going to be rejected. So, after a long search and somewhat on a whim, I found this local theater in Naperville and applied there as an assistant stage manager for two productions. That organization, my current employer, is The Summer Place Theatre. And what can I say? I think "interesting" is too insufficient of a word to use to describe my experience so far. Although, I currently have just finished one production and am about a week away from tech week (known as hell week) for the other show I'm working on as well.

Quick side note: for those who have no clue about the details of what goes into a theatrical production, you need to know four things:

1. The phrase "I can't, it's tech week" is REAL.

2. During tech week, many caffeine addictions are created and made into habits when sleep is no longer your best option.

3. Appreciate everyone you work with (especially tech because you would look and sound like a crazy person without us).

4. Most of all, know what you're supposed to do and enjoy it (after you accomplish what you need to do - don't be a slacker).

While there have been so many ups and downs, I'm happy to be back in theater. It's the memories that I've made from picking up coffee to learning fun facts about people I've met (like the fact that they may never have had a bundt cake or know what it is before), or talking drama and taking stupid pictures or even just being able to work with all of the amazing people I'm so lucky to have met and gotten to know.

Theater has always been a huge part of my life, something I've been involved in for over four years. Despite the fact that in high school I was an awkward tech kid, now I would just say that I'm a little less of an awkward tech kid with a bit more authority and knowledge. Since I started tech freshmen year of high school, I've learned a lot. Not only about theater, but about myself and the world around me. I've figured out what path I want to take in life and where I want my career to possibly lead me. It's refreshing to meet so many people and not have to worry about judgements, despite the fact theater is known for being "judgement-free," but in reality, we really judge the most because we come together collectively but are still so very different.

Overall, I'm glad to have made my way back into being involved in theater. Even hearing strange comments from rehearsals, like singing into another's mouth or that our female lead is actually a train (not the character, but cast suspicions) and even when characters aren't the brightest (in a laughable way) or they just randomly say weird things to each other. You take in your environment, the people that you've met, the love you have for what you do, the show that's hopefully not a full train wreck and everything and you see it for what it is. It's people bonding over a love of theater, a love that has such a creative outlet that it's almost like your parent telling you bedtime stories. You sit down and hear tales about fantasy worlds and characters you might relate to a bit too much.

The world of theater is a complex place, but once you've mastered the maze, you'll find your directions from there and your love for it will only grow as you find more and more to see and hear. This summer will be an adventure like most shows I've worked on, only fading into the back when it's your time to shine.

Cover Image Credit:

Photo by seabass creatives on Unsplash

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18 Broadway Songs That Will Make You Want To Choreograph Them

Get out your character shoes, it's time to dance

Ever hear a show tune and instantly want to choreograph a number to it? Ever staged an all ensemble dance number? Ever see yourself teaching choreo to the Broadway cast of "A Chorus Line?" Well then this list might be for you.

1. "La Vie Boheme" - Rent

Anyone else want to come up with staging and choreography for one of the most iconic numbers in musical theatre history?

2. "Big Fun" - Heathers the Musical

Though this musical never made it to Broadway, I know you are dancing to it anyway.

3. "Hair" - Hair

Hairography, anyone?

4. "Saturday Night In The City" - The Wedding Singer

High energy and just makes you wanna go out and show off.

5. Time Warp - Rocky Horror Picture Show

6. "Mamma Mia" - Mamma Mia

Don't all theatre kids already know the choreo for this?

7. "Bend and Snap" - Legally Blonde the Musical

"Do it, and we'll go away." Seriously, bend and snap.

8. Staying Alive - Saturday Night Fever

No explanation needed here.

9. "Footloose" - Footloose

10. "Totally F****d" - Spring Awakening

Anyone else want to jump around on stage and curse like a sailor simultaneously?

11. "Brand New Day" - The Wiz

Anyone want to put a flash mob together with this song?!

12. "Do Your Own Thing" - Bring It On: The Musical

Tumbling and musical theatre in one musical is what this show is all about. Can we put every song on this list?

13. "Dancing Through Life" - Wicked

Time for the whole cast to dance together.

14. "Get Ready/Dancing in the Street" - Motown the Musical

This whole show is a throwback but the best blast to the past you could ask for.

15. "Revolting Children" - Matilda the Musical

These kids freaking kick ass in this number. It is insane.

16. "Money" - Cabaret

I can see it now.

17. "Don't Stop Believin'" - Rock of Ages

If New Directions can do it, we can too!

18. "Anything You Can Do" - Annie Get Your Gun

This number is basically a dance off.

Cover Image Credit: Bucks County Playhouse

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I Went To My First Broadway Show And It Was Tony-Worthy

To be clear, this was my first Broadway show on Broadway, and I loved almost every minute of it.


Let me just make the clarification now that this wasn't my first Broadway show I've seen. I've seen several at the Arizona Broadway Theater and also recently saw Wicked at ASU Gammage. However, this was my first ever Broadway show that I actually saw on Broadway. I was excited, to say the least. I knew it was at one of the smaller theaters on Broadway, but I was just as excited as I would have been for any of the other performances. It really all about the experience, and overall mine was great.

Deciding which show I was going to see was no small feat. I had a mini list that included Aladdin, Waitress, and Chicago. Deep down I really wanted to see Hamilton, but as a broke college student who recently started to make payments on their new car, Hamilton tickets were not even an idea. It really came down to what I could afford and what I would regret the most not seeing. So I chose Chicago. The ticket that I bought was relatively inexpensive since I sat in the far back of the theatre and would still have enough money left over for a commemorative t-shirt.

I was originally planning on going with one of my cousins that lives in New York, but her plans changed and I ended up going by myself. Some of you reading this are probably thinking, "aww that's so sad, going to the theatre by herself." Let me just squash that thought by saying how much I prefer going to things like that alone. I go to the movies alone more times than I go with someone else. That could be a whole other story on why I prefer my alone time, but in short: I'm an introvert. So I was fine seeing the musical by myself. My dad and I walked around Time Square before showtime. He dropped me off, and then we both went our separate ways for a few hours.

Like I said earlier, this was one of the smaller theaters on Broadway so it wasn't hard to find my seat. I bought my shirt before I went to my seat because I assumed there was going to be a line after the show. There wasn't, but I was still happy I got it earlier because then I could just leave after the show. My seat was literally four rows away from where the back wall of the theater was. Which was fine. I have great eyesight and I could see all of the stage clearly. That was until the large group of teenage girls sat directly in front of me and completely blocked my view of center stage.

During the first half of the musical, I was swaying side to side to get a view of the stage. I didn't want to yell at the girl and tell her to sit properly so the people behind her could see. Mainly because her mom was sitting next to her, and I didn't want that drama in the middle of the play. So during intermission, I moved seats. To my right, there were several empty rows of seats with no one for a few rows ahead of them so I thought "might as well." I made the decision to move because someone came and sat behind me about two songs into the music and started to complain that she couldn't see as well. So I took the liberty for both of us to have an experience and moved out of the way. The rest of the time was marvelous. I was able to see clearly. I sang along without having an older lady next to me judging my ability. It was fantastic.

The only thing that I wish would have happened, but I guess that only happens in lesser productions is when the audience gets to meet the cast and get an autograph. Of course, I didn't have a pen or sharpie with me so it was honestly for the best, but that would have been the cherry on top. Hopefully the next time I am in New York I have enough money to see another Broadway show. Maybe if I save up it could be Hamilton.

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