This week in my theatre practicum I learned a few new skills. It’s amazing how much you can learn working in the theatre. I learned how to create trim and how to set up a hanging flat. No matter how many hours I put into working in the theatre I am always surprised by how amazing Theatre Westminster is at creating a show.
On Monday we worked on completing the trim on the bottom of the columns. First we needed to create another cut sheet so we knew exactly how much trim to cut and at what size. Then we began cutting our materials. I learned that the trim used in the show would be made mostly out of lumber that we would need to run through a router. I also learned that much of the trim was really just Styrofoam in the shape of a tube. The lumber was cut to the right lengths and then a few shop employees and I ran each piece through the router to give it the look we wanted. The Styrofoam was then cut and an adhesive was applied so that it stuck to the surface of the columns and other parts of the stage.
After working on the trim we brought in the hanging widows that we had built. These windows would be attached to a fly with strong ten foot cables, chain and turnbuckles. Our job then was to make these windows level so that both windows looked exactly the same. We struggled with this part at first because every time we moved the windows up or down on the chain we would become further and further from level. We decided to get a large ladder and simply adjust the windows from their turnbuckles. This meant turning the turnbuckles so that they leveled out the windows gradually and eventually both windows became level with each other.
It’s amazing how much one can learn from working in a theatre. I am always surprised by the things that I learn and the amazing skills that I can take with me once I finish my practicum. These skills will remain with me for the rest of my life and will be essential no matter what career I might end up in.
I am eager to learn more next week and am excited to see the show will come together.