Backstage with the crew of “Cinderella”
November 8, 2023
Photo courtesy of "The Current"
Under the lights: seniors Finley Hiple and Olivia Horner perform as evil stepsisters.
The crew members of “Cinderella” have been working behind the scenes to make the school musical come to life.
Westfield High School’s theatre department has been working hard for the last few months on this year's musical: Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella.” The cast and crew stay after school nearly every day to rehearse, build sets, work on costumes, and make props. Everyone has a job, and everyone works together to make the show run smoothly.
“I am a set builder for “Cinderella,” so I help build the set that the actors interact with,” junior Maddy Phelps said. “I also help a lot with painting and occasionally help decorate,” they added.
Building the set is hard work, but there are many other jobs to be done in order to make the production a success.
“I’m part of the costume crew, but I’ve also helped with props and set!,” freshman Evelyn Kimble said. “Basically, we mainly work on putting together costumes, and help out others when needed.”
There are many things that need to be built, sewn, painted, and crafted for the set of “Cinderella.” Often, members of the crew start a new task as soon as they have finished an old one. Despite the speed at which things are made and tasks are finished, many crew members have a favorite thing they have worked on throughout the past few months for the show.
“Aprons!” Kimble said when asked what their favorite thing they’ve worked on is. “They are easy to make and pretty cute!”
Some say that working on parts of the set is their favorite part.
“I loved working on the thrones for the king and queen as well as working on the bridge,” Phelps said.
Others say that the experience is what makes the show special to them.
“All of our productions have been fun and interesting in their own way,” junior Usko said. “The set and production of Little Shop is my favorite set that we've built and it was so much fun to work on. The Diary of Anne Frank was a very impactful experience. Both were extremely fun and educational productions and I feel lucky to have been able to participate in them.”
Being on the crew is demanding, and members sacrifice a lot of their time and energy in order to run the show, but some feel that the community and the sense of pride that comes from seeing hard work come to life makes it all worth it.
“I enjoy the community we have,” said Phelps. “I love that I can work with my hands in general and be a part of something.”
This sentiment is shared by others in the crew as well.
“I've been doing tech since my freshman year musical and the minute I joined I fell in love,” Usko said. “It was the most welcoming environment I had ever been in and the idea that I could help in making the show come to life without needing to perform before hundreds of people was amazing.”
As opening night approaches, the stress levels increase, but some are excited.
“My favorite part of tech has got to be run crew and tech week,” said Usko. “It is probably the most stressful and hectic part of our entire job, but there is something so fun about running around in the dark and making all of the show run like magic.”