Titanic the Musical


The captains stand on the deck as the passengers board the ship below.







Sitting in the auditorium you are comfortable in your cushioned chair, while it’s buzzing with everyone chatting, you are anxiously waiting for the lights to dim and for this years musical to start.

Backstage actors are in place, stage crew is on their toes ready to move into action. It goes silent and everyone holds their breath. The video for the opening of the show starts playing and then once it’s over the projector screen goes up. It’s almost like time stops for a second and then immediately there’s people rushing everywhere.

Sitting in the audience you only see the actors and their props performing a wonderful show. But when the scenes change have you ever wondered where those things came from or how they got there ? Two words. Stage. Crew.
Stage crew are the ones who build the sets and who move props onstage and do any other tasks such as lighting or sound. You can compare them to a car, they’re the parts of the car that make it go. Although there would be no show without the actors and actresses or crew they are equal but not always seen that way.
Crew also does plays not just musical and a fact that not many know is that crew is responsible for the stage all year including band and chorus concerts but also any other event hosted in the auditorium.

“I have been a part of stage crew for two years now. I joined because I thought it would be a fun and good experience. I think it’s so much fun and a great thing to do for experience,”said Alec Barlock, crew member.

“I joined stage crew at Latrobe in 10th grade. I was in stage crew at my old school and enjoyed being a part of the productions but not having to be in front of people. I am the stage manager, I am the student in charge of the crew. I make sure that crew is doing their jobs, there is communication between cast and crew, and help to fix any problems. I am also in charge of the sound. I run the soundboard and make sure that there is good sound quality, and that the cast is able to be heard” said Benyo

The musical for this year is Titanic. “This musical is different because we rented the entire set. For Wizard of Oz, we built some of the set and rented the flying equipment,” said Daniel Krack, director of the musical. With renting a set it’s a lot more stressful than building it. Because this show carries a much more serious tone safety and being where you’re supposed to be is very important.

“It was important to have a big crew this year because we did such an advanced musical” said Barlock and there was almost 20 crew members on stage.

The crew has to be extra careful with the pieces props and anything else that came with the set. The larger scale pieces are 1000 pound wall and a 850 pound wall attached to chains from the ceiling. The crew essentially is doing work that is equal to a broadway musical. “The crew was amazing for this musical! They were responsible for hanging the major set pieces and moving the scenery quickly and in such a way that they don’t intrude on the audience’s viewing experience”, said Krack.

“This year I loved so much because I have so many close friends on crew with me, which makes it all the more fun,” said Barlock. “

From the audience the process is smooth and fast but behind all of that is lots and lots of stress. “I am very nervous while watching! This is because I am not on the stage with the crew to manage and guide the crew. I really have to trust the crew and that they understand the directions and notes that I gave during the rehearsal process,”said Krack on watching the show from the sound booth.

“With as much experience I have I still get nervous running a show” said Barlock “In the past few shows there have not been as many people that have to have microphones. We have 18 microphones and for Titanic there were 38 people that had to have a microphone at some point in the show. To make things a bit easier for ourselves we had 2 people backstage and their jobs were to switch mics from one actor to another” Said Benyo

“A TON of pressure!!! The stage crew is an integral part of any stage production. As a director, I have to make sure that all of the different elements of the show–the cast, the crew, the orchestra–all work together seamlessly. It has to look easy to the audience. If one element is not running properly, the shock wave will be felt through all the other elements. Once the curtain goes up, the production is out of my control. It feels like I’m driving at 100 MPH and I’m taking my hands off the wheel! Theatrical productions are all about teamwork and trust” said Krack.

“The crew is what really makes the show run smoothly. Without lighting and sound you wouldn’t be able to see or hear the actors as well-if at all. We can make the smallest changes and it can completely change the look of a scene. Without run crew actors would have to change the scenes by themselves which ruins the illusion of the performance” said Benyo.