Artists

The Tech Behind the Musical

By Dex Keizers

When you buy a ticket to a musical you might go with friends and enjoy the show, but there is a whole different side to the musicals than just what is performed on stage. Logan Montgomery and Dakota Stoughton control the sounds and lights for the musicals this year.

 

“The job can be stressful sometimes, because all the people depend on you,” Montgomery said.

 

Montgomery is currently a junior and mainly controls the light for the musicals, and with all the responsibilities he has it is good that he is not new to this.

 

“I have started doing this since my freshmen year,” Montgomery said. “The job is very fun to do, and you get to meet a lot of people.”

 

Dakota Stoughton controls, together with Montgomery, everything there is for them to control behind the light and soundboard, which is located in the middle of the auditorium.

 

“I am currently a sophomore and I am mainly controlling the sounds,” Stoughton explains. “It seemed very fun to do, and I have already helped my church prior to working the lights at school, so I already knew a bit about what to do.”

 

Before a musical, Montgomery and Stoughton have to set up their electronics so that everything works properly during the play. They set up their tech while the cast is doing repetitions, which is where the cast practices multiple scenes in a day.

 

“The plays consist of multiple scenes,” Montgomery says, “and for every scene there is, we have to make what is called a ‘cue’. A cue sets all the light in the proper orientation and sets everything up so it is easier for us during the actual musical.”

 

Everything the audience sees is being managed by high-tech lights. These lights have motors on them to light up the exact part of the podium they want to be lit up. There are many different lights, all used for specific things like a spotlight for songs or a bright light that lights up the whole stage.

 

“We do have to set up all the cues before the show, and we practice whenever the actors rehearse their scenes, which is almost everyday after school until 6pm,” Stoughton said.

 

Montgomery and Stoughton try to perform the best they can, however, during Sunday’s performance the light board began to lose control over some of the lights. This added chaos to the scenes as the front of the stage was unlit, and spots had to be added to make sure the audience could see the leads.  

 

“If we mess up, we get help from the actors, and we all play it off as if it was part of the show. Because nobody really knows what was supposed to happen, and we try to improve ourselves next time,” Montgomery said.

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