Ode to Tech
They spin a revolving stage that weighs hundreds of pounds a dozen times every night, some with their bare hands. They sit in the dark wearing headphones whispering cues and following script. They perch in the heat near the ceiling behind hot spotlights that focus the audience’s attention in every single moment, or they seclude themselves inside a booth in front of a console where they operate the faders for light and sound. They sew buttons. They keep track of everything. They know the show better than some of the actors. And they are quiet. In long stretches of the play when nothing needs to be done, they read novels in the dark. They wear black so no one can see them.
No one can see them.
They are heroes, every one, and to commemorate their contribution, someone has drawn lovely cartoon portraits of each team as if they were members of rock and roll groups: The Revolvers, The Lighting Crew, and Da Booth. At curtain call, they’re off stage, or otherwise out of sight, while the cast gestures off left and then out toward the top of the house to direct the audience’s applause and appreciation. I sing the praises for these invisible stars of the show, without whose help, there would be no show.