Backstage at ‘Big, the Musical’

Backstage at ‘Big, the Musical’

What’s the one crucial part of a musical that is only good if it is not seen not heard? Why that would be the theater technicians. These theater technicians, or “techies” as they call themselves, are every bit as important as the actors on stage. It is their job to build the sets, work the lights or sounds, change the scenes, and make sure everything moves smoothly and efficiently.

For Chantilly’s upcoming “Big, the Musical,” the techies really have their work set out for them. The “Big” set is, well, big! The set includes scenes that range anywhere from a carnival to a suburban neighborhood and toy store. Designing such a set on a high school stage requires unbelievable ingenuity and even more patience to put it all together. Matt Florence, working on the construction crew said, “…building the set is a bonding opportunity, it allows us [the techies] to create something together and watch it functioning. It’s the greatest feeling when you see how well the set worked.”

Without lights, you could not see; without sound, you could not hear; so it is our light and sound technicians who make all of this possible. They spend countless, long hours setting lights or mics, and going through old CDs looking for that perfect ambience at every moment in the show. Wes Vitale said “setting lights is more of an art really, you spend hours redoing and retrying light setups, and once you get everything just right, you can sit and watch the people enjoy your work.”

With all this effort, the one greatest trait any techie must posses in order to make their work beautiful is dedication. Dedication to the show and dedication to your fellow techies is the only way to achieve amazing technical show. And all of this work earns them nothing but the satisfaction of a job well done. These behind the scene wonders deserve a standing ovation for all the work they do.