Masters of the Craft
While the students at Walnut watch plays or musicals, the stagecraft crew is behind the scenes making it all happen. They have provided countless hours of work by painting sets, setting up lights and managing music during plays.
For any show, preparation can take anywhere between 12 to 25 hours a week. For the second semester, each person must contribute at least 40 to 50 hours.
“I prefer stage managing,” sophomore Lauren Belknap said. “I feel like I’m in charge and contributing. A lot of people don’t know how much they do, they just think that we’re just back there for the actors but we actually have a job and we help. If we don’t do our job then the show won’t happen.”
Stage production allows students a better time to focus on both social and interactive skills.
“We kind of build our little family in stagecraft,” senior Kristy Hill said. “It’s fun, you get to make friends. The fact that we spend so much time together backstage or during shows; like sometimes we goof off, but most of the time we’re working. We have to figure out how to solve problems together and if something goes on, we have to be on it. We can’t let the audience know that something’s going wrong.”
Most of the students in stagecraft have to stay after school to earn their hours but if a member is past their second year and heads a show by doing lighting, sound or stage management, they can receive money through the mail from the school secretary.
“Something that gets other students to join is the fact that they can get paid after their second year,” senior Aaron Centeno said. “They join the class also because you learn to get really close with theater. You can just really be who you are and all of the kids have a lot of fun in the class. They get to know each other really well [and develop] friendships throughout the year.”
Stagecraft is recommended for students with dedication, drive and ample time on their hands.
“I like contributing to [stagecraft],” Centeno said. “It’s something that I learned, something that I enjoy to do and that I continue to love over the past four years. At first I had just joined it as an extracurricular class, like something to put on your college applications, but it turned out to be something really fun.”
By Irene Ornelas, Staff writer