It’s the week of the show y’all!
The week preceding a show’s premiere is referred to, in many theatrical circles, as “hell week” and I find the term offensive. Yes, the hours of mindless sitting and waiting in a dark theatre while tech crew chatter back and forth depletes the very life out of an actor. Yes, the feeling of an impending 12 hour day can make the most steadfast member of an ensemble consider hiding somewhere and playing sick. And yes, two hours spent on a single scene change can torpedo morale and make people question their life choices.
Hot take alert:
I love tech week. I don’t even a consider myself “techie” but I live for these moments. Theatre is made up of thousands of small artistic choices all strung together by technical elements. On the granular level, a little too much light here, a set piece askew there, and nobody seems to notice. After two 16-hour days in the trenches of tech week, poring over every detail, big and small, you start to truly fall in love with the process. If premiering a production is akin to birthing a child, then tech week is the labor.
But tech week is actually not that bad
First of all, tech “week” at Herndon HS is only two days. Second, the students are generally fed (thanks to our incredible boosters) and released at a (somewhat) reasonable hour. Third, this year the students didn’t even have classes over the last two days, so hopefully this has helped more of the actors see the value of tech rehearsal without falling asleeep at the switch. The tech crew works so diligently during this time that it’s easy to take them for granted. But when we’re all invested and putting others in positions to succeed then everyone wins!
I’m in heaven!