Monday, July 23, 2007

We're All in This Together

Posted by Bruce Miller
I just returned from Opening Night of Disney’s High School Musical and I'm proud as a peacock. I’m proud of Chase Kniffen (Director), K Strong (Choreographer) and Sherri Matthews (Music Director) who’ve done such a fantastic job assembling a talented cast of 38 actors from 20 different schools (and home schools) and turning them into such a cohesive ensemble.

I’m proud of my talented wife, Terrie Powers (set design), and my equally talented colleagues and friends Sarah Grady (costume design) and Lynne Hartman (light design). The show looks terrific, and moves without a hitch. OK, maybe there were two tiny hitches tonight, but who noticed? These three artists make the show look like a million bucks, on a budget less than 2% that size.

I’m proud of our unsung heroes, and let me first mention our amazing Tech Director, Bruce Rennie. And as I mention his name, I want to say the word “hero” three more times. In show after show, Bruce makes miracles happen behind the scenes. The company doesn’t provide him with nearly enough support staff or expertise. Still, somehow, he always gets the job done. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think there was magic involved. Theatre IV and Barksdale simply could not exist without Bruce Rennie.

The company may not provide Bruce with enough support staff, but the ones we have provided are exceptional in their commitment, talent and hard work. Derek Dumais (Sound Engineer), Adam Tiller (Electrician and Light Board Op), and Wendy Vandergrift (Assistant Tech Director) are invaluable members of the staff. Amy Gethins Sullivan, Kim Parkin, Tia James and Terrie Powers (Painters); Nathan Meadows, John Valerie, and T J Spensieri (Carpenters); and Joe Bock and Virginia Varland (Electricians) have worked tirelessly to create the eight to ten different locales that the show requires.

Most important, I’m proud of our talented kids. But more about them later. In this post, I offer my most heartfelt thanks to the amazing adult leaders noted above. Every cast and audience member owes you a standing ovation.

They’re flying; they’re soaring—and to quote a cliché, you are the wind beneath their wings.

I thank you all for a job well done.
--Bruce Miller

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for removing and then remounting this blog. I hated to see the bitter comments that had nothing to do with the blog or the production or these kids. I noticed you changed the headline from "They're All in This Together" to "We're All in This Together," which is of course the correct name of the song. But you're also delivering a subtle message with that title change. And you're right, everyone in the Richmond theater community is "in it together." How sad it is when we lose sight of that.

Just remember, 99% of the Richmond theater crowd gets it. None of us should be deterred by that handful that wants to spread distrust rather than good will.