Behind the Scenes

How did you get into stagecraft?

I entered the class for the construction aspect, but I found that being more directly involved with the shows was a lot of fun. I was invited by Mr. Lane to run lights for “Noises Off” because I’m in his stagecraft class in second period and I have some experience from the 2013 One-Acts.

What are you in charge of during theater productions?

I run the light board in the back during the actual show. Before the show, I do a lot of setting up. I help out with sound and do some heavy lifting as well.

You guys had some problems with the curtains during “Noises Off,” didn’t you?

One day we were trying to lower [them] and I was pulling at the bottom on the pulley and it just wasn’t budging. Then, all of a sudden, I heard this crash and the pulley shot straight out of the floor and caused dust and bits of concrete to shower down. At the time it was pretty scary but it’s funny looking back on it.

Have you ever thought of being in front of the lights – rather than behind?

Definitely not. I don’t want people looking at me.

What’s the payoff of doing this?

It’s a lot more rewarding than you’d think. You don’t get applause or the attention the actors get – but it’s still really fun. I like working with my hands. It’s a personal thing. I get a sense of accomplishment. I’m not bothered by the lack of recognition because I don’t do as much as the actors.

Outside of stagecraft, what do you do for fun?

I’m in the robotics club. I spend a lot of time there. That’s probably the most interesting thing I do. I spend time with my family and friends. There’s some Netflix involved.

Don’t you row, too?

I’ll start my third year in the spring. Our team doesn’t practice year round, but we get up very early before school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We’re out at 6 a.m. on the river. We don’t mess around.

That sounds pretty demanding. What keeps you going with it?

It doesn’t hurt that I’m a morning person. The Willamette River is gorgeous and after the workout I’m awake for the rest of the day. It makes me more productive.

Is there a motto that keeps you going?

I would have an easier answer for that but it’s changed a lot through the years. Right now, it’s: ‘There’s nothing you can’t deal with in some way – so you just have to come up with a solution that fits you.’ It may not be the best or most orthodox way – but you have to do what you can. In stagecraft, there’s a lot of improvisation. You just have to go with it and there’s always a way to fix it.

What do you see for yourself in the future?

I’ll definitely continue stagecraft. Later on, I want to go into an engineering profession. In college, I want to major in engineering – mechanical mostly. Most of my family are either teachers or in the medical profession.

Your mother is an ICU nurse. Does she ever come home with car wreck stories?

All the time, and always at dinner. My siblings and I don’t like that all too much.

Have you always been interested in engineering?

I’ve always been interested in building things. During class in middle school, I would build spring-loaded projectiles and bows, and once a glove that shocks people. It was a way to pass the time. I would take school supplies and make them into things.

Dream job?

My options are open – which is a good way of saying I have no idea. ♦

Check out the rest of our Time With interviews for more brief snapshots of Grant community members. 

Hunter Stewart
Senior Hunter Stewart enters her second and final year with the Grant Magazine staff as an editor-in-chief. Stewart, who has lived in Portland her entire life, has found her niche with the magazine. As a reporter last year, Stewart won a Gold Circle from the Columbia University Scholastic Press Association for "Difference Doesn't Mean Weakness". After spending a stint of her summer at the renowned investigative reporting hub ProPublica in New York City, Stewart hopes to tackle more social justice issues, set the bar higher for the magazine and ultimately help improve every staffer's skills this year.

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