Behind the scenes

The Von Trapp house is in progress, with stage crew members working hard on it every week. (Photo credit: Emma Kruse)

Ever wonder who puts together the sets for Mercy’s plays and musicals? The sets may look professional, but in truth, they are built with hard work and dedication by Mercy students and staff. Since directly after Christmas in January, stage crew has been preparing for Mercy’s newest musical, The Sound of Music. The musical premieres March 10, months after the set preparation begins.

The set is designed entirely by Speech teacher Ms. Anne Eddy herself. With the help of her father, Mr. Ron Sill, and the stage crew, her visions come alive on the stage.

The Sound of Music will be junior Claire Frankowski’s fifth show as a stage crew member.

“I love stage crew!” said Frankowski. “It’s tough waking up early on Saturdays for it, but I enjoy doing it.”

Stage crew meets every Saturday and on Fridays off from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Not only does stage crew meet during these times, but they also must stay after school until around 6 p.m. for “tech” rehearsal. During this time, they work on scene changes and moving scenery for the show, which also involves managing the sound and lights. There is a soundboard where two girls control all the microphones and sound effects, while two girls on the light board handle all the lighting of the stage.

According to junior Ciara Lopus, the set is not completed yet, but should be finished within the next couple of weeks, around March 4.

Although stage crew is fun, it can be stressful and hectic as well. The hardest thing Frankowski has had to do is work with molding. Sometimes the pieces are very difficult to place.

“We have to do angles at the corners and screw some molding in at the very top of walls, so it’s hard to get it level and in the right spot,” said Frankowski.

Lopus has had some frustrating things happen to her, as well.

“I have redone the stair railings three or four times and just found out I have to redo them yet again,” said Lopus.

Stage crew members have a great amount of work to do. However, Frankowski enjoys how Mrs. Eddy assigns each member a job to do, ranging from constructing things to painting.

“A big part of stage crew is the problem solving,” said Frankowski. “If something is made wrong, or doesn’t fit, you have to come up with creative ways to fix it. I like working will all the tools and at the end, we have something amazing to look at and say ‘Whoa, we built that?'”

All in all, their hard work pays off.

“I am so happy to be on stage crew,” said Lopus. “I love all the girls and spending time with them. Plus, the shows are so much fun.”