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The Student News Site of Hudson High School

The Explorer

The Student News Site of Hudson High School

The Explorer

Drama Club: What the crew does behind the scenes

Multiple+Drama+Club+students+help+design+the+stage+for+Hamlet+during+a+Friday+Work+Call.+These+work+calls+take+place+nearly+every+Friday%2C+and+this+is+when+students+create+the+set%2C+props+and+costumes.
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Multiple Drama Club students help design the stage for Hamlet during a Friday Work Call. These work calls take place nearly every Friday, and this is when students create the set, props and costumes.

On stage, the audience gets to see the shows they love, but backstage, there is so much that goes unrecognized. 

Two shows a year bring dozens of students together to bring their passions for theater to life. The cast gives us characters we love, like Ariel from The Little Mermaid and Roxie Hart from Chicago. This year, the Drama Club performed Hamlet for the fall play and will present Into the Woods in mid-April. 

Hours upon hours of work go into a production. From creating the props and set to days of rehearsal, there is so much that must be done by so many different people. Those who don’t receive nearly enough credit but are thoroughly involved in the production are the crew. 

The crew’s integration into the production might be short-lived, but it is the most important two weeks of work. After months of rehearsals with the cast, the technological and production elements must then be added. 

The crew starts off strong with the ever-infamous “Tech Sunday,” a full-day rehearsal focused on bringing the technological elements into the show. Nine hours of scrutinous precision goes into just starting up the sound and light crews, something that will continue for another two weeks. 

The lights are an integral part of any show. They influence the setting, mood and location of the whole show, and their level of importance is undervalued by many. The crew must create cue after cue, which can change several times in a scene. Just creating those takes the full nine hours. They spend the next two weeks heavily editing, adding and removing cues.

Cues are what keep a show running smoothly for the crew, nobody knows that better than one of HHS Drama Club’s Stage Managers, Junior Evie Marquart. Marquart’s job requires her to be at every rehearsal, something not even the cast has to do. Marquart explains, “As Stage Manager, I’m responsible for documenting what goes on during rehearsals. I take attendance, write reports and record all the movements for scenes. When we begin to put the show together with tech and the pit, I then document and call all of the cues for the show.” Marquart does not just call the cues for the lighting crew but also for the fly crew, run crew, sound effects and props. This totals about 100 cues for plays and around 200-250 cues for musicals.

Costumes are what best identifies characters and the best costumes help create the best characters. Senior Sam Farabee knows better than anyone what goes into making the costumes that bring the characters to life. Throughout her career with the club, she’s built an impressive resume as Wardrobe Coordinator, Wardrobe Mentor, Dazzle Award winner for “Best Costume Design” and the Drama Club President. Farabee explains, “As for the creation of costumes, we have three choices: pull, buy or make. The first thing we try to do is pull costumes, meaning finding costumes that we already have…and we will then look to see what pieces we may need to make or buy. All of the pieces for the Ancestors in The Addams Family were a combination of buying and making. Because of the specific costume pieces and color palette, the costume crew had to dye, distress and paint nearly everything we bought new.” The costume process often goes unappreciated, but it truly brings the characters to life, and their work was finally rewarded at last year’s Dazzle Awards where they won “Best Costume Design.”

One of the most sought-after positions in the crew is the Assistant Stage Manager, who leads the stage movement and all the scrambling that happens between scenes and backstage. Former Assistant Stage Manager Junior Lily Scafe knows the role well. “It’s dark and chaotic backstage,” she said. “Things are always moving, from the ceiling, from the stage, from backstage, it’s never-ending.” However, amongst all the chaos, they get the job done and help create and set the stage that has been months in the making. 

Through all the chaos and work, everybody has one goal: to create a great show, and that cannot be done without the phenomenal work of our many crew members. 

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Luke Ream
Luke Ream, Reporter
Luke Ream is a junior at Hudson High School. This is his first year in Journalism and writing for The Explorer. Luke is a member of a variety of different clubs and extracurriculars at Hudson High School including Speech and Debate, Drama Club, Thespian Honor Society, National Honor Society and the Varsity bowling team. Luke enjoys hanging out with his friends and listening to music in his free time. Luke is looking forward to writing about a variety of different topics, especially entertainment and pop culture.
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