It was a momentous night, last night. After two months of building, painting, rigging and frustration, the stage crew moved the larger than life set out into place. Reminiscent of the Laugh In set, this 2-ton structure creates a portal looking spyglass into the world of Pippin.
As I dismissed the cast from rehearsal, three burly men walked into the theatre, Wayne Peters our technical director, and Randy and Fred, our stage crew supervisors. They stand around for a bit, watching the kids leave. I minute later senior Luke saunters in and joins the slowly growing circle. Preston, a junior and finally Mitchell a senior, join the club of men in the scene shop. They are mentally preparing themselves to move the 20ft towers that each weigh a ton.
Finally it’s time. Luke scampers to the top of the tower, putting the winch in place. Everyone else prepares to move wheels under the set. Crank, crank, crank, crack! The winch that can lift a ton, can’t lift the set…
“The set weighs more then a ton?” Wayne laughs.
New idea… use the air compressor and air lift the set in the air. This worked. In an hour we got the set rolled into place. Now to connect the towers to create the circle shape. Basically, it’s Randy walking a 10ft by 8ft structure up a ladder and putting it in place. Mitchell and Preston ran around bolting everything in, Luke pulled the arch up with a rope, while whining, “I’m dying up here.”
“Are you hurt?”
“No,” Luke whines, “It’s hot.”
Finally after 3 hours of work, the set was put up. 20ft tall, spanning 30 some feet, it’s an impressive feat of carpentry from the HHS stage crew. Two months of building, 4 ladies painting it, putting doors and hinging it all together, 6 men move it, and now we shall perform with it!