While many people go to the Emily Gates Student Center to see students perform on stage, a cast of students work behind the scenes to make the performers’ acts possible.
Musical Tech Theater can be taken as a class or students can volunteer shortly before shows to acquire community service hours. The student center holds two musicals each school year, and Tech Theater has a “build season” ranging from a month to two months before each show. During the build season, the students in Tech Theater construct the sets for each show. They either reuse props from previous shows and make minor changes, or they build completely new sets depending on the upcoming show.
In the weeks leading up to the show, Tech Theater rehearses with the cast of the musical. At that time, the on-stage performers know where and when they are supposed to be on stage, and with the rehearsal with Tech Theater, performers can practice with light and sound.
Tech Theater has a wide range of responsibilities during each musical, including moving around set pieces for any set changes, making sure props are in the right spot, adjusting the sound and controlling the lights.
“Without Tech Theater, the actors wouldn’t have lights and they wouldn’t have sound,” junior Sophia Fried said. “The show would just not run as smoothly.”
A range of 10 to 15 students return to each musical, making each show complete.
“I continue to do Tech Theater because it’s very impressive when you see how much work everybody puts into each show and the amount of work it takes to form each show,” junior James Martinez said. “It’s incredible how everybody in the entire musical department is able to come together and create an amazing show.”
Each student in Musical Tech Theater has their own role. Some students in Tech Theater help build sets before the shows and then are on-stage performers during the show.
“We are all one team,” backstage worker junior Lara Fleischhauer said. “We are all good at our own parts, and we all help each other out.”
Musical Tech Theater is an essential piece of San Marin’s performing arts program. Without it, none of the musicals at San Marin would be possible.