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How Broadway Works: The People Behind the Curtain (working title)

What an audience sees at a live performance is what is presented on stage ― the actors, the curtain, the lights, the orchestra for musicals, the musicians, and sometimes stagehands. What they don’t see is backstage, where many theatre professionals collaborate to bring the production to an audience.


Broadway is the mecca for American theatre and it is the ultimate goal for a producer. But putting a Broadway show together is unique and complicated; it has its own set of joys and problems. The Broadway unions are strong, competition is fierce, costs are high, and the talent pool is enormous.


My intention is to introduce people to the myriad theatre vocations that work in partnership behind the scenes to bring an original theatrical vision to the stage via the Broadway community. The occupations that garner the most public exposure – i.e., writer, composer, lyricist, director, choreographer, set designer, costume designer, lighting designer, sound designer, etc. – are only part of the team. Many unsung, out-of-sight people contribute their individual imaginations and talents to complete the pictures we see on stage – seamtresses, dressers, wig makers, stagehands, carpenters, painters, and now computer techies. They are the backbone of a theatrical production. Many of these artisans have their own companies that are hired for a specific production. It is this theatrical circle that brings the stage magic to the forefront. All of these jobs are creative, fulfilling and necessary to create a home for an actor on the stage.