As artists and performers we need to branch out and learn more facets of our craft. So often, young singers fresh out of undergraduate programs believe that they will either be in the spotlight on stage or quit singing altogether. But in the real world of performing, things are not so black and white. While I, too, wanted to always be center stage singing my heart out, I’ve worn many other behind-the-scenes hats. I’ve directed, assisted the director, assisted the conductor, choreographed, worked the light board, assisted with costume design, worked as stage manager, a stage hand, and as prop master, I’ve climbed up in the rafters to adjust spotlights then climbed back down just in time to perform in the next number, and I am continuing my tradition of running supertitles for Opera San Luis Obispo this evening.
From the crows nest above the stage, amongst the cables and dials, I frantically flip through the pages of my score trying to keep up with the rapid dialogue and lyrics. Technical difficulties add troubles and adrenaline to the mix, but, just like a singer on stage, we learn to make do, make it work, and keep the show going. The more you work behind the scenes, the more understanding and grateful you are to those who are hiding behind the curtain. The men and women dressed all in black who move about the stage under the cover of dark, who adjust the lights, repair ripped costumes, and even keep the supertitles up on the screen, they deserve just as much praise as the leading diva. Without them, the show wouldn’t go on. These jobs lack the glory, but not the pressure. So, the next time you’re asking a stage hand for a favor, being given a cue by a stage manager, or being dressed by your costumer, do so humbly and with gratitude. You never know what they are going through and you never know when you might be filling their shoes.
#detoxyobody challenge day 12: noose pose. Sometimes I need a twist in the dark during intermission to keep my cortisol levels down.