Saturday, April 27

Background became Foreground

I realized something tonight...and understood why my brother-in-law painted our living room alone instead of having us help him. It is physically painful to watch people do something you do well...when they do it so badly.

I worked as a professional theatre technician for 3 years. As a highly respected volunteer in the field for about 20 years. As a sound tech and sound consultant for about 15 years. When theatre tech is done right, the audience doesn't even know you exist. It is an exquisite dance between the performers and the support team but only one half is visible.

Techs are an interesting breed. We wear black. We arrive early and leave late. We drink our coffee black because we don't have time to chase down cream and sugar. We get the thrill from the applause and stand in the shadows knowing that part of that is ours. Acknowledgment is appreciated but we get our satisfaction from a different place. It is the smooth execution of the invisible plan that draws us back to the next performance and the next production.

When Patrick sees the poorly executed paint pains him. When I see a production where the performers pour their heart into their roles and it is overwhelmed by technical errors - I feel physically ill. 

To the performers I saw tonight - you did a good job. Some of you were incredible and some were adequate. Some I can't tell because I couldn't hear you, see you, or was distracted by weird backstage flaws. To my brother-in-law...I understand a bit better.

Hamster beaten...but not flown.

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