Life Behind the Curtain

Audrey '20
The actors wore green. Their steps were choreographed leaps, each move amplified by the excitement of the audience. “Mr. Cladwell” jumped into the arms of his staff, just in time for his sign to fly into the scene. I watched the audience gasp at the shimmering letters and felt a surge of pride. I had been part of the team that made the sign, and loved that I could contribute to the magic of this year’s School musical, “Urinetown.”
I have always enjoyed working on creative projects, and found my calling at tech for the fall musical. Whether it was sawing, painting, or even welding, tech enabled me to learn new crafts in a fun environment. With guidance from [Performing Arts Master] Mr. [Matt] Campbell, I gained new carpentry skills that have proven to be useful both on set and in my general life.

I also appreciated the purposefulness of the set in portraying a message to the audience. Before hanging the “Cladwell” sign, we taped gold and silver streamers behind the letters to signal the character’s upper status. When the lights reflected off the material, it formed bright sparks to “wow” the audience.

However, being on the tech crew went beyond building the set. Before the performance, my parents joked that they would wait for the transitions between scenes so that they could see a figure in a black t-shirt sprint onto the stage. This and many other jobs fulfilled by the crew helped to run the show.

As someone who had watched the previous musicals, I didn’t realize how much work happened behind the scenes. Standing behind the curtain was like living in a different world as I watched my friends give cues and ensure that everything ran smoothly. The work could be time-consuming, but was immensely rewarding as it resulted in the audience’s entertainment. I enjoyed getting to know a new group of people backstage and admired everyone’s efforts in creating an amazing production.

Tech is one of the places I think best characterizes Lawrenceville. It represents a place where different people can come together to work on an astonishing project. I value the people I met just as much as the skills I learned and their talents in making such a grand production. I am excited to be in tech again next year!

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Through House and Harkness, Lawrenceville challenges a diverse community of promising young people to lead lives of learning, integrity, and high purpose.  Our mission is to inspire the best in each to seek the best for all.