The above Ad will no longer appear after you Sign Up for Free!

Inspiring future techies

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by ogivol, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. ogivol

    ogivol Member

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is more of a general question, hence me posting this in general advice :)

    *if it is in the wrong forum you have all permission to move this thread*


    Anyways....

    My high school, historically, has never been big on technical theater. Our TD is very qualified though which does slightly make up for it. Now heres the question, it's been me and my friends in technical theater since basically middle school. I don't know if its the fact that we currently fill all the major positions, (there are still spots for lbo, spot lights, grips, ...) we currently occupy light design, set design, stage managing, and assistant stage managing (although we are technically the most qualified)

    We need more people. It seems nobody cares about good old technical theater any more :( . And if they did, there would be nobody left to teach them as I remember learning. I was taught by those with more experience, and if our school doesn't get anyone interested in this stuff then by two years, everyone with actual experience is gone.


    Any ideas how I should go about inspiring a love of technical theater in younger inexperienced but motivated and mature middle schoolers/freshman

    :grin:
     
  2. hsaunier

    hsaunier Active Member

    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    28
    Location:
    Northwest Ohio
    Make sure that you and your friends make the environment inclusive. Not that you have, but on occasion when you get a core group of students that do something well, breaking into the "inner sanctum" can be difficult. While not intended, people just shy away. Remember, you speak a differnt language when talking theater and others will not understand and feel left out. Share with non-theater friends in the lunchroom the satisfaction you feel when you accomplish a great production and how the audience responds when they see something delightful, that you helped produce.
     
  3. waynehoskins

    waynehoskins Active Member

    Messages:
    782
    Likes Received:
    49
    Location:
    Arlington, TX
    I've been watching the trend for ten years. I think it's a cultural thing: we live, like it or not, among the Me Generation. The idea that many kids have, aware of it or not, is "it's all about me" .. so performance is perfectly appealing even if they're not good at it, but design/production has them behind-the-scenes, so it's not very appealing on the whole.

    Meanwhile, everybody who's been doing it for years can't take a vacation because there's nobody left to do it.

    Kiddos want to be entertained, or to entertain their friends, but nobody wants to schlep cable or throw iron.

    As to how to overcome that, I think it has to be one-on-one. Bribe a friend of yours into helping with light hang or whatever. Perhaps they'll see "hey, this is fun" and want to do it. It hasn't worked for me, but at the church last year I got a wonderful youth tech volunteer, who has since done exactly that with his friends, and so now I have a large immature tech crew, hooray. But they're learning and involved and let us do stuff, and I see them maturing as we go along.
     
  4. DaveySimps

    DaveySimps CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

    Messages:
    2,815
    Likes Received:
    222
    Occupation:
    Performing Arts Center Manager
    Location:
    Macomb, MI
    I agree with hsaunier, try to be as open and inclusive as possible. The more fun people think you are having, and the more approachable the group is, the more likely they are to consider joining.

    ~Dave
     
  5. NicktheEvil

    NicktheEvil Member

    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    4
    Unfortunately there is no real way to make someone do something extracurricular. I don't think you'd want to MAKE someone do it anyway because if someone is being forced, the quality of work and safety will probably go right out the window.

    I too have an affinity for my old high school theatre and my undergrad theatre but when push comes to shove high school is a stepping stone and you have to leave whether someone is there to take the reigns or not. its nice that you're concerned about who will take over but in the long run its not your problem.

    And on top of all of this, you seem dedicated to technical theatre, so i will share some wisdom. Some people consider the term 'techie' derogative. Just don't want you to find out the hard way like i did.
     
  6. cdub260

    cdub260 CBMod CB Mods

    Messages:
    1,304
    Likes Received:
    150
    Location:
    Southern California
    There is a thread devoted to this very subject. You should check it out as it's highly entertaining.
     
  7. ogivol

    ogivol Member

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    I appreciate the answers, I do realize that we somethings are a bit inclusive. When we become to comfortable with our surroundings its hard to let new people in. I will try to bring friends in though, I do have a few that I might be able to get interested in tech. I personally do not find the term techie derogative, its just a term. Technician might be a term I might prefer in an official setting, like in the play book or crew member list or something. I'd find it just a bit odd, but thats just my tastes.

    Thanks for the answers
     
  8. loki

    loki Member

    Messages:
    69
    Likes Received:
    6
    Another thing that works is (at least in my school) showing people the kind of technology you get to use, Both my generation and the next generation techies at school have all come from the "Laptop Class" so their people who like to play with gadgets.
     
  9. seanandkate

    seanandkate Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

    Messages:
    699
    Likes Received:
    154
    Occupation:
    Educator
    Location:
    Stouffville, Ontario
    As much as the senior technician will resist, have them watch more and do less. Their job at the highest level is to train. Or if they have to do something (troubleshooting problems for instance) have them talking out load so the newbies learn their process. Make sure that the dirty jobs are equally shared. If the newbies think for a second that they are just slave labour, they'll bolt. Lastly, as best you can, make it fun even while it's work. We do this work because we like it (as opposed to making you, you know, financially independant, famous, irresistable to the opposite sex, et cetera . . .)
     
  10. ruinexplorer

    ruinexplorer Minion CB Mods Premium Member Fight Leukemia

    Messages:
    4,281
    Likes Received:
    715
    Occupation:
    Projectionist
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    I don't remember trying to pull people in, we did get our friends to come to work calls which then helped out with filling the show crew (they just had so much fun!). Try to get some of the woodworking class or art class students to join. There's a good chance that they'll have the opportunity to work on projects unlike anything that they would in their own classes.

    I'm glad that you are dedicated, but outside of your own circle of friends, I would let the instructors do most of the recruiting. Since they are ultimately responsible for making sure the production is up and running, they are the ones responsible for finding the crew. You will probably be able to recruit some of the performers, especially those who wind up only getting bit parts, just make sure to welcome them openly.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice