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My Final Blog Post by Shelby Grant

Just kidding! I’ve still got one more of these coming for the spring musical but I’m a senior now and I think that this is the perfect time to reflect on all my favorite little things about Nathan Hale theater.

My name is Shelby Grant and I play a couple of love interests, an old man, and a detective in our production of The 39 Steps.

My experiences in this theatre program are ones that I will treasure for the rest of my life. Of course, I loved the big things like actually getting to perform for an audience, wearing cool costumes, and getting to know a great group of people, but there are some little moments that will always stick with me. Here are a few:

Dressing rooms: When I was in my sophomore year I got the honor of getting to use a real dressing room during the fall play (as opposed to using the black box as I had done in my last two shows). It was an exciting moment and I had so many good times with the people I was sharing the dressing room with. One of my favorite memories of that time was playing music really loudly and dancing with my friends as we got ready to perform.

Quick changes: That moment when you’re freaking out offstage because “oh my god!? Is the scene actually that short??” and you’re frantically trying to get your jacket on while tripping over your untied shoes before you have to go back on stage but then the techies look you dead in the eyes with the calmest expression on their faces as they help you get ready to go back to performing and you’re reminded that you’ve practiced this and you’re completely fine. That’s happened a lot.

Conversations backstage: In our backstage area we have a whole hallway full of mirrors (creatively dubbed the “mirror hallway”) and this is the designated hangout spot during tech rehearsals and performances. If there is hot gossip to be shared, you’ll get it here.

Tech week treats: Was it a bad idea to bring tired actors and techies massive bags of candy that inevitably all got eaten within the hour during 5+ hour-long rehearsals? I don’t think so.

Screaming pump-ups in the music room right before the start of the show: (not so secret) trade secret! Before every single performance, all of us in the show will be backstage yelling random nonsense as loud as we can and jumping around to get our energy up for the show. It’s indescribably fun and one of my favorite things that we do. If you listen very very closely a few minutes before the lights go down you might be able to hear us. I sure hope you can’t.

Impromptu rehearsal photoshoots: Rehearsals are long and can use up a lot of our energy. But, even when we aren’t on the stage working on scenes we are still having

tons of fun. One of the ways we do this is by taking lots and lots and lots of selfies all over the PAC (performing arts center) and doing our best to not become distractions.

If you’re still reading this, thanks for indulging me as I got to think about all the things that I had missed about being on the stage over the past year and what I am ecstatic about being able to experience during our show, The 39 Steps, right now. You should definitely buy tickets to see this super cool play and if you do I promise I’ll write a shorter blog post for our spring musical, Pippin. See you at the show!

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