FHC’s stage crew is just one giant family



FHC’s stage crew sitting on stage, wearing their masks, and posing for the camera after their most recent show

Senior Brendan Wilson’s favorite part of being on stage crew is the meals.

“Me, personally, at least, I don’t get to see the cast because I’m not backstage,” Brendan said. “I’m in the back of the auditorium, and I really get to talk to one, maybe two, people the entire show.”

Brendan works not backstage, but with the technology component of each production. This means that he only interacts with a few individuals during rehearsals and performances.

“The lunches were really nice because I actually got to talk to my friends,” Brendan said, “and hear all the funny stories and all the crazy things that happened backstage like someone throwing up, someone trying to throw on a costume in three seconds, and other crazy things like that.”

Because Brendan has participated in so many shows, he’s gotten to experience “family” meals a plethora of times throughout his high school career.

He’s been a part of The Crucible, Random Acts of Talent, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon, and while his favorite part in general is the quality bonding that goes on during the meals they share, his overall favorite was picked for a different reason.

Even if it scares you, it might be the best time of your life. It’s well worth the time.

The [Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon] was very funny, and it was a nice reprieve from the craziness that [is] going on as of today,” Brendan said. “I also got to learn a new system because I was doing projections which is the screen behind and setting up the set. I was helping [junior] Thomas [Smith] with the sound as well.”

Like Brendan, sophomore Ashley Yarnell’s favorite play is The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon. 

Being on crew since she was a freshman, Ashley has been involved in both The Crucible and The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon. However, the one production stood out to her as being more fun.

“I feel I was closer friends with everyone on cast and crew because we had already been together for a show before,” Ashley said. “It [was] just more fun.”

Unlike Brendan, Ashley’s favorite part of being on stage crew has nothing to do with the food provided and everything to do with the people involved. While lots of fun memories are associated with the stage crew for Ashley, one in particular stands out as her favorite.

“This year, there was one time when they threw an apple off the stage and they missed the person who was supposed to catch it,” Ashley said. “[They] accidentally dropped it and it rolled back out. Then, Linus Kaechele picked it up and took a bite out of it.”

Similar to Ashley, sophomore Ella Hunnewell has been involved with theater for a total of two years now, and has had her fair share of funny memories throughout her time in the program.

Since her freshman year, sparked by her older sister’s admiration for theatre, she has continued to help and support the plays and musicals.

“My sister, she’s just a few years older than me, she joined theatre,” Ella said. “She had so much fun, and she encouraged me to do it.”

Family may have been one of the reasons she originally joined, but Ella has also found a family present within stage crew. 

“I think my favorite part of any show is the award ceremony,” Ella said. “After the show is done, the heads of the crew or some cast members will hand out awards. So many fun jokes are shared, and you just have a really great time.”

While her sister was one of the reasons for joining theatre, she figured out stage crew was the right spot for her and her talents on her own. She wanted a spot where her abilities would be utilized and stage crew fit the bill.

“I get to watch the actors work,” Ella said, “and I also get to be a part of it, but I don’t have to memorize lines. I just have to memorize where to put things and where to set things up. It’s fun and you get to be a part of it all [still].”

Despite being excited to watch the actors perform during her first show on crew, the excitement didn’t totally cancel out the anxious feelings for Ella.

“I was nervous that I would mess up or trip on stage,” Ella said, “but after the first night it was just so much fun and went by so fast.”

The feeling of nerves before a show isn’t uncommon for the first show. Brendan felt similarly during his first show.

“I was a bit nervous,” Brendan said, “but it wasn’t an ‘I don’t know how to do it’ nervous. It was [an] ‘Oh no, we have an audience now’ nervous. I [had] been doing it for a week and a half at that point, so it was quite easy to just do sound. After that, the shows become easier.”

Despite the nerves that always surround the first show and the insane amount of hours spent perfecting the performance, Brendan is so incredibly glad he joined when he did. 

“Don’t make the mistake of waiting too long to join,” Brendan said. “Even if it scares you, it might be the best time of your life. It’s well worth the time.”