Behind Scenes Heroes

Behind the Scenes Heroes: Theatre’s Backstage Production

Not everything is what it seems, especially on the stage. In theatre, the actors may be front and center, but without a dedicated crew behind the scenes, the show could not go on.

Microphones for the performers to be heard and spotlights for them to shine bright like stars are a couple of aspects, among many more, that are controlled by the technical and artistic staff of a production.

Although they are not seen physically, the crew puts in the same amount of hard work and passion into their roles of the show as the cast and should receive a standing ovation as well.

In honor of the sold-out run of the Monmouth University Theatre Department’s production of Hair, it is time to give credit where credit is due to those who helped this production become a huge success.

Anthony DeFilippo, a freshman criminal justice student, played a large part of the production team by operating the spotlight throughout each performance. Hair is an extremely audience interactive show; being on spotlight is already a challenging job, but having to chase around the actors as they bounce around the entire theatre takes talent and patience.

DeFilippo explained, “The most difficult part for me was when I followed the actors with the spotlight and they would never stay on a certain path…I had to try and predict and follow them all around trying to make it seem natural and fluent.”

Although working spot can be tough, DeFilippo did an amazing job and felt the love and support from his fellow cast and crewmates.

He said, “I always got the reassurance from all the actors of how great of a job I was doing…and when I put the spot on, I can see the joy on their faces…”

Another behind the scenes hero is Kayla Mingino, a sophomore English student. Mingino took on two important parts of the Hair production staff: assistant director and running the deck (backstage) area during each performance.

Mingino stated, “I started assistant directing in high school, when my drama teacher took me under his wing…I always knew theatre was for me, but I couldn’t find my place within it… once I started directing, I knew I found where I belonged.”

Theatre is not only for those who want to perform, but also for anyone who loves the stage. Whether they are on it or behind it, everyone within a production needs to work collectively to create something spectacular for the audiences.

Since an actor needs a crew to perform, the collaboration between the two is crucial and could make or break a show.

Mingino explained that Hair has been her favorite production to take part in thus far because of the strong bond that was formed throughout the process amongst all members of the production.

Mingino continued, “The unity between the cast, crew, and creative team really made for an extraordinary show.”

By having a good connection and positive energy throughout each rehearsal, it is easier to work out the kinks of the show and have everything flawless before opening night.

Specialist professor and director of Hair, Sheri Anderson, has trademarked the phrase, “Smarter not harder,” throughout the rehearsal process. Basically, by working together as a team to simplify any obstacles, the show will continue to grow and develop into something amazing.

Anderson, DeFilippo, and Mingino are only three of many behind the scenes beauties that truly held this production together. The number of students and faculty members that put hours on end into this production is both overwhelming and heartwarming. One underlying concept of the show are the ideas of community, peace, love, and happiness. Naturally, good vibes and chemistry developed within the production, which made the final product significantly more rewarding and satisfying.

DeFilippo encourages, “Take the time to do theatre, even if you don’t know if you’ll like it or not, you’ll meet the greatest people in the world and have an amazing time doing it.”

PHOTO TAKEN by Alexandria Afanador