Go Deeper Happy Hour on the Fringe: Tech, Production, and the Theater Technician Job Fair

Happy Hour on the Fringe: Tech, Production, and the Theater Technician Job Fair

Posted February 11th, 2020

On this episode of Happy Hour on the Fringe, hosts Raina Searles and Tenara Calem chat with two members of FringeArts’s production team, Evelyn Shuker and Georgia Schlessman. They go over the thought process behind the Technician Job Fair we hosted on February 10th, 2020, as well as what it means to work in the tech/production sphere of the theater world. Sit back and enjoy the insightful commentary, practical advice, and touching stories of our tech team. At the next show you attend, look out for their incredible production work!

Listen to the episode and read the transcript below.

Tenara: Hello and welcome to Happy Hour on the Fringe. Fringe Arts is Philadelphia’s premiere presenter of contemporary performing arts. I’m Tenara, I’m the community engagement manager at Fringe Arts.

Raina: And I’m Raina Searles, marketing manager here. We invite you to pour one up and enjoy our conversations with some of the most imaginative people on this plane of existence.

Tenara: So here at Fringe, we understand the significance between the tech and production staff and the artistic sector and how important that relationship is to be able to present these magnificent works of performing arts to the public, and a lot of times the audience doesn’t necessarily understand or have insight into that whole process. So, we’re going to focus on that in our podcast today.

Raina: Yeah, today we are joined by Evelyn Shuker, our Master Electrician, and Georgia Schlessman, Technical Director at Fringe Arts, to get a deeper understanding of what the relationship between tech and production staff and the artist sector looks like, and what kinds of things are putting on stage. Welcome.

Georgia: Thank you.

Evelyn: Hi, I’m Evelyn.

Tenara: Hi!

Georgia: I’m Georgia.

Tenara: Amazing. Why don’t we start first with the tech job fair that’s coming up. And then we can sort of spin outward, right? So can you two describe what that fair is?

Georgia: The job fair is another one of our initiatives to specifically in this case to help freelancers and production overhire to network with other people. And, as you would assume, jobs — get jobs with other people. But especially in our production, our theater tech industry, there’s a lot of, oh, you happen to be in front of my face at this time and I have a work call that I need to fill. And then in addition to that, we also find some new people.

Tenara: We being, the FringeArts.

Georgia: Sorry. Yes. Our FringeArts production department.

Evelyn: Yeah. The reality of the industry of production is that a vast majority of the people who work in this field are freelancers and work part time, with a large number of — a large number of institutions that different theaters have different lists of people that they call on a regular basis. And that the key to making a living in the industry is to be on as many of those lists as possible and to have a relationship with the kinds of people who are booking calls, as much of a relationship with as many people as possible. And the job fair is basically an opportunity for people who are making lists of people to call and people who want to be on all of those lists to get in the same room and meet each other face to face.

Tenara: I imagine that for Fringe, because of the sheer volume of the programing that we present during the festival, that we might have one of the bigger lists in the city. Is that true?

Evelyn: I think that that’s largely true. Probably the only larger list in the city is the union, which has a very extensive list. But ours, we have a huge labor need specifically in the month of September, and most other places have moderate labor needs throughout the year, about the same level.

Georgia: Yeah. But we take everybody at festival time -.

Evelyn: Especially during FEASTtival –.

Georgia: Even non-union, and people even have their union card. And I don’t know any of their specifics, but as long as they pay dues to the union on that work that they did here so that they, they can work with us, but we tend to have non-union people.

Raina: Do we typically see shortages during the Fringe Festival? Or are we like maxed out when we’re hiring?

Evelyn: We usually have, during the festival specifically, we sometimes have a hard time filling calls. We don’t have as many skilled hands as we need for some days and for some days, especially during the end of the festival, especially during the FEASTtival benefit every year. There are more technicians in the city that could work. There are enough people to fill those calls. We just don’t always have their names.

Tenara: Ergo –

Evelyn: Job fair.

Tenara: The job fair. Understood. Yeah.

Georgia: And then the other, the flip side of that, I used to be the production manager for 1812 Productions and we had a show that was running upstairs at the Arden during the festival time. And I, of course, had trouble filling my calls as production manager of 1812, because everyone’s working for Fringe.

Tenara: Yeah…

Evelyn: It’s a weird labor market.

Georgia: Yeah.

Evelyn: And it’s a weird way to make a living. It’s like almost seasonal work.

Georgia: Definitely feast or famine.

Raina: So we’d love to kind of talk about specifically what you each do and dive into your background. So I guess just to start, how did each of you get into theater production, into the tech side? Did you ever find yourself onstage? Like what was your entry way?

Evelyn: I started and still continue to be onstage. But I think that, like my first experience in the theater, my actual, and my parents, my father is a technical director at this summer camp that does a lot of theater production. So I’ve kind of been building sets since I was like 4 or something. But the–

Tenara: Incredible.

Evelyn: I know.

Georgia: She’s very advanced.

Tenara: Little baby Swift, just, with a hammer.

Evelyn: I was probably nine at that point. I don’t think they’d let me use the power tools that early.

Tenara: Yeah, fair.

Evelyn: I was doing theater in high school and college as a director and a playwright and a performance artist. And while I was in college, I was doing like work study jobs at the performing arts center there. And that over the course of the four years, as I was doing that for pocket change, I realized that I had developed like an actual trade skill. And then when I graduated, I’m like, oh, I can keep doing this for money. And started freelancing right out of right out of college using the connections that I had made while I was doing that work. And I still do like performance art and other kinds of theater on my own time. But my day job, I sort of fully become theater lighting, both design and technical work.

Georgia: I blame the Arden Theater Company and specifically Glenn Perlman for me being in production. Gladly in production. In high school, I was an actor and then my senior project in high school, I ran the light board on Violet, which was at the Arden [mumbling purposefully] many years ago, which of course is interesting because I met all of these people that then later in life I worked with professionally. And I did a bunch of internships at the Arden, I went to college and I double majored. My first major was performance, theater performance track. And in college I also did theater tech for my work study. So, I would get a couple hours of that every week. And if I wasn’t cast in something, then I almost always was like, alright, I’ll work backstage, I’ll do whatever. So then out of college I did the Arden apprenticeship and that’s where I met Glenn on Violet. That was one of his first shows. But then I really got to know him during the apprenticeship. And I always loved any of my time in the theater, doing actual production. Those are very fond memories. And I continued to freelance in kind of all departments and then I became the production manager for 1812, and now the technical director here at Fringe.

Raina: I’m also curious, so you were at the Arden for your senior project, was that – were you at a performing arts school? Like, how did you end up at the Arden specifically?

Georgia: That was, I went to Germantown Academy and very smartly, I think, all their seniors for that last month, they’re like, “go work.”

Tenara: Yeah.

Georgia: In whatever field you’re all in college and you know what you’re doing. So in this instance, I blame my mother. My mom was like, how about you, you know, maybe call up the Arden, that would be kind of cool. And she’d always taken me to see their shows. Cool to me, probably not to anyone else, but my advisor towards the end of that internship with the Arden, he was like, your internship journal is my favorite. It’s the most interesting one to read. It’s kinda like, oh, it’s great. But it is, it is very interesting.

Tenara: I have a question that’s based on a lot of my personal experience just working in the arts. And I’m sure that the two of you can add to it. I think that there is sometimes this unfortunate, in my opinion, it’s an unfortunate division between what a lot of people understand is quote unquote, “artistic” art staff and then like quote unquote, “production” art staff. Right? And in our building, we feel this is, you know, the production, have a loft that they work in, which is sort of on top of the administrative offices, which is just like lovely because sometimes I’ll be sitting on my desk and I can hear you all like talking. And I, like, can’t see your bodies, but I can hear your voices. And it’s very much-

Georgia: Just very tech theater. To be up in a dark area where no one can see us.

Evelyn: Like goblins.

Tenara: Yeah, in my estimation, there’s also an aspect of this is like the audience can’t see the actual labor that you all have put in, but they can see the fruits of that labor. And so it then lends itself to a sort of like, yeah, a little bit of an ignorance about what that labor looks like and how integral it is. But I’m wondering if the two of you can talk about, if you do actually in fact, experience this division. And then if you feel like there’s, if that’s an inevitable thing, if that’s a cultural thing, if that’s something that you have seen people work against or overcome, yeah. I don’t know.

Georgia: Yeah, I definitely think that you see that division. You also see a lot of companies and artistic directors and whatnot actively trying to bridge that. I wouldn’t say to remedy that situation, because there’s always going to be a little bit of “I don’t really know what you do.” And I think that’s just inherent in kind of what we’ve learned. And certainly when you go to see a play, you’re focused on the actors. You’ll find a lot of tech people that still act on stage or used to. Occasionally you’ll get the actor who also does overhire calls. Those are my favorite. And I mean that seriously. Yeah.

Evelyn: Yeah. One of the one of the things you notice in lighting is a large percentage of people who do technical lighting work are also designers. So there’s actually this interesting trading that often happens where like I’m designing a show, and a person who’s coming to do to like M.E. for it is somebody who’s designed a show that I’ve M.E.’d a show for them. So they’re just like there’s this –

Tenara: And M.E. means –

Evelyn: It means master electrician. So it’s the person who’s in charge of the technical elements of making the, of making the design happen.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: So there is this sort of weird show by show hierarchy where there’s one person who’s like actually making the artistic decisions and then there’s a large number of other people who are making that happen.

Tenara: Right.

Evelyn: And sometimes that includes like sort of like minor artistic decisions within that framework and sometimes it doesn’t.

Tenara: Right.

Evelyn: So like I think there’s an inevitability in terms of there being like a hierarchy, because often the work that we’re doing is downstream of the artistic choices that get made. But it’s still incredibly difficult, time consuming, and like, technically complex. I feel like there’s a necessary distinction between the artistic work and the technical work, but I think that often the skill intensity of the technical work gets forgotten.

Tenara: Yeah. Well, I just yeah, it bothers me as somebody who’s worn a lot of different hats that, you know, you see it at all levels, right? Because like, reviewers don’t really mention design.

Evelyn: No.

Tenara: And like the assumption being that like a good design is a design that I don’t notice, which is horrendous also, you know. I even think about shows that we’ve presented here like, about how, yeah, how time consuming and how much artistic thought has gone into the design. And so to downplay it on the artistic level, when you’re thinking about like an audience’s experience of it and then to even further like, you know, to make that distinction, but then what – I worry that, that creating that distinction helps downplay the labor that goes into executing those artistic decisions.

Evelyn: I think there are some interesting shows that have actually happened in Fringe Festivals past that are like moving in a different direction. I’m thinking of Stifters Dinge from a couple of years ago, which was a show without any actors where the entire piece was design elements.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: It was a show entirely composed of projection, design, set design and sound design and lighting. But sort of, lighting was also taking kind of a back role in that. Which it often does. That like there are sort of designers and artists who are interested in making work where like the technical components of the theatrical experience are taking the forefront. I think Romeo Castellucci does that as well. And I think some things that Whit MacLaughlin with New Paradise Laboratories, does.

Tenara: I mean, Superterranean –

Evelyn: But also there is a lot of, yeah, like weight and space for technical design elements as a part of the artistic vision. That’s an angle that people can go for. Other DIY performers go in a really different direction. I think that’s also super, super important.

Georgia: I love, um – my mom I will use as my best example. Like once I started doing technical stuff, like I did a lot of electrics overhire. And so she would start asking me like, how’s the lighting in that piece? Or she would go see something. And she was like, the lighting was really cool. So it just and, you know, obviously because I’m doing the work, it kind of clued her in. But she then started like mentioning to me like, oh, Glenn, Glenn Perlman at the Arden, Glenn’s set was beautiful. He did a fantastic job. So it’s kind of neat to see those people that usually just are focused on the actor and the singing and the music to start to incorporate all of those other departments into their vision and start to get a sense of the work and the artistry that’s behind it. I tell students that a lot because they tend to be actors and directors, again, because that’s the first thing that you see you and you understand, right? I try to remind them that theater tech people are artists, too.

Tenara: Yeah. Absolutely.

Georgia: And a lot of us started acting, etc. Our artistry is just a little more pragmatic.

Evelyn: Yeah, and it’s also like it’s downstream of storytelling to a certain extent. That’s sort of like there is a show. And then the design elements often are in support of the storytelling, but are like often trying to be a little bit invisible so that you can see the work. And then it’s true that like, like people who review shows never mentioned the design. But there’s also a level to which like if you’re really noticing the design, then you’re not necessarily watching the story, that often there’s an artistry in being invisible, that like takes sophistication to notice, but is also sort of like important and relevant.

Raina: Well, I think one of the main things for me that really stood out was specifically in our High Pressure Fire Service series last year, one of the things that made me notice the tech components was that every time I walked into the theater for a new show, it looked completely different. We had like, you know, one stage where it was in this like tennis court setup with like audiences on each side. We had another one where there’s this giant like game show, kids show like, set build, there was another one where it was like a condensed version of our space with a cabaret setup. And I was like, every time I walked in, I was like, I have no idea, like this place looks totally different. I’m like, you know, you go in different doors and then you see this space in different ways. And that for me was very much like on its own. It’s like, OK, this is a really cool set. But then seeing the transformation was like, there is so much work that goes into turning, you know, this space into this totally different space in the span of like, you know, one week sometimes. And I think that really also got me more attuned to what the work was.

Tenara: Well, but I also think that like this idea that a set is in service of the story, ergo, it can or could be invisible to somebody who’s just like letting the story wash upon you. I mean, I think it really depends on the goals of that story, right? Because like, obviously, if I’m going to see The Importance of Being Earnest, like I’m not there to see like a stunningly contemporary set, but I’m thinking about James Ijames’ piece at the Wilma.

Raina: Oh, uh –

Tenara: Kill Move Paradise.

Raina: Kill Move Paradise.

Tenara: Yeah, that set with like this really sloping floor. I mean, it was so clear that the set was a character in the piece, you know. And I think that maybe I’m revealing my preference here. I’m like, I want design to be a character.

Evelyn: But Matt Saunders, I think, was the designer Kill Move Paradise. And he does a lot of work that takes up a lot of emotional and physical, and like, like it takes up a lot of storytelling.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: That’s a lot of his design aesthetic.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: It shows up in a lot of the work that he does specifically. It was also, I, I just know him a lot because he was also my mentor.

Georgia: Yeah.

Evelyn: He once did a set design with me and it was like, miraculous.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: He’s a genius. There was also a piece that I worked on that I was in Boston with this company, Company One. They did this production of Really. It was in an art gallery. It was this sort of like pure, whitewashed art gallery. But they wanted to like put in a bunch of risers and they needed to like make a dressing room out of this one space. So we installed stud wall, dry wall, like whitewash the whole thing so that it was the same color. We just actually changed the architecture of the building that we were in in order to have there be like places for the audiences to walk in, places for people to change. But so that it could seem as though it were like actually what that art gallery looked like in the first place, then like, because they wanted it to feel like an art gallery, we spent multiple weeks like doing domestic carpentry in order to make it look, into in order to make it seem seamless and in order to construct that environment. And so I feel like both design aesthetics have a have a place in the world.

Georgia: Those are always, those are always my favorite.

Evelyn: Oh it’s so much fun.

Georgia: And when it’s like I spent so much time and energy on this and it still looks like an art gallery or, my, my favorite is for Our Town at the Arden, they, we had to build seats in there, traditionally, in their upstage area and we go to the play, and before him my mom’s like your name is in the back of the playbill as a carpenter, what did you? Like, you don’t understand how much time and energy those risers that, it looks like we did absolutely nothing. And so-.

Evelyn: Because it fits into the already existing building.

Tenara: Yeah.

Georgia: Yeah.

Evelyn: The Wilma during the production of Angels in America, similarly, they wanted it to look like there, you were seeing the back wall of the theater, but they also really wanted there to be a space where actors could pass behind it. So they built a replica of the back wall of the theater, four feet in front of the back wall. It was an insane amount of work for like, very little gain. But it was kind of amazing.

Tenara: Well, but, ok, not for nothing. There is a huge gain there, right? And like this is, I think, the problem.

Evelyn: It was like so –

Tenara: Yeah, like people don’t always know that, that we have these like artistic aspirations and goals and to solve them or to reach them, we have to do bananas thing in order to get there. You know what I mean?

Georgia: And on a dime.

Tenara: Yeah, absolutely.

Georgia: As Keighty, our Director of Production first quoted to me and I use all the time, “Nonprofit Thoughts.” “Nonprofit thoughts.”

Tenara: Yeah.

Georgia: Which means like, alright, we want to clean this up and save it, even though in another instance we might toss it. We actually have to save this, or we have to reuse this.

Tenara: Yeah. That brings me to the other part of production that I think even actors don’t necessarily realize, people who are really in the artistic process. Which is like, to what degree do you two find, and maybe this like at Fringe or in the industry at large like, to what degree are things being recycled or passed on? And to what degree is it just like we made a set and now we trash it, we throw it away? Is there a push to make things a little bit more recyclable?

Georgia: I would say there’s the desire to make things more recyclable. Again, at the Arden, they have another group that comes in on strike day, which is when we take everything down and at The Arden, we end up with a dumpster outside and putting all of our old set pieces in there because a lot of the lumber, it’s got glue on it, it has a million staples, it has nails. It has, you know, some things that have been nailed together and glued. It’s just, don’t even try to take it apart. But then we have these artists that come in and they will have time to try and get those nails out. And so they do take some of the stuff. But Glenn has to be like, alright, you have to come at this time, and you’re allowed to be here for, you know, 30 minutes or whatever, because it really is like, go, go, go, go, go. And time really is money. And we can’t just be sitting around while someone’s digging in the dumpster.

Evelyn: Yeah, I think that I would like for there to be a more specific push in order to make especially like the scenic design more sustainable. But right now it is pretty wasteful just because the pressures of storing set pieces require so much space because everything that gets built is huge.

Tenara: It’s enormous.

Evelyn: With often very little actual assumption that they’ll ever get used again. In my view, it’s a pretty big problem in the industry of trying to figure out a way to sort of like have these really beautiful design ideas and have these sort of like ways to create a purely novel environment for people to exist in while also making it so that you’re not wasting, well, you know, a couple hundred pounds of lumber every time that you build it.

Tenara: Right, because then that just goes straight in the trash.

Evelyn: Yeah it can. A lot of it can’t really be reused.

Georgia: You know, I won’t name show or company or anything, but there have been instances of like, “Uh, we’re going to cut this.” Really? Because that cost 20,000 dollars.

Tenara: Right? Right.

Evelyn: And you’re just gonna cut it because you don’t want it in anymore. That’s a little frustrating.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: That stuff happens. But also, if it’s not right for the play, it’s not right for the play. You have to say goodbye to it. But it’s hard. Soft goods that have painting all over that you spent hours and hours and hours, cut. Gone in an instant.

Evelyn: You have to have so much like grace about that in the industry.

Tenara: You can’t be too precious.

Evelyn: You can’t be, like – there’s a level to which like I have to keep telling myself, like even if this isn’t, even if this element is cut, it was going to be cut when the show ended anyway.

Tenara: You know, high school actors sobbing at the end of every show, you know? That like you’re so sad that it’s over. And I do remember like working on a show in college that I was so invested in and then watching them strike this set where I had spent so much of my emotional energy, and I just felt like it was tearing my house down in front of me.

Evelyn: Oh god yeah, I’ve had that experience.

Tenara: It is like, yeah, it speaks a little bit to the like kind of fast moving nature of the industry.

Evelyn: Yeah. My directing thesis in college, we had this very, very large set that we built. And like I was one of the people who built it. Like, I was also being hired as overhire to build the set for the show I was directing. And we built this little house inside of a black box that like audience walked into with like actual ceilings and real walls. And we put in tile carpet flooring. It was like, it was extremely labor intensive, so over the top for a thesis. But that I had spent multiple weeks like building this thing. And then, the second — the second it closed, we started to strike. And I just, I did start to cry.

Georgia: All the time, it’ll be like — and I did all of this energy, and including previews, it’s open for two weeks. You just, it hurts a little inside. That’s the nature of the beast.

Evelyn: Yeah.

Raina: I do also wonder, thinking about like the dynamic of like having everything brought down at the end, does that differ when you’re working with, you know, entirely new works vs. plays that have like, kind of like a standard staging or something like that where especially thinking about recycling, you know, it is kind of like this has been done before. This will be done again. Does that change like depending on the type of shows that you’re working on?

Georgia: Definitely. I would say definitely. Any of the touring shows that come into FringeArts that have been on extensive tours, they will have their sets and everything is on a sheet that they check off, things have to go packed in exact order in this box and everything is –

Evelyn: Way less sad.

Georgia: Yes. Way less sad because they’re going to be taking these things to Pittsburgh or whatever.

Evelyn: The hard work, the hard stuff is new work where you don’t have any expectation that it’s ever going to happen again. There’s like a dream about it, like touring or being remounted, but usually like at least with everything that I’ve made, it’s just like you, you do it and then it’s over. And then people move to different cities and you did it. And it’s a memory. That’s like sort of baked into the, like the art of theater, is that it happened, it’s a memory that happened in the past. And you don’t get to do it again. You don’t get to see it again. Like even if you go and see a remounting of a specific show, you didn’t, you aren’t seeing the same thing. Because it’s a specific event that happens in time in front of you, with you, right then.

Tenara: Yeah.

Evelyn: It’s ephemeral and dying. And that’s kind of the point.

Raina: So one of the questions that we always like to ask to all of our podcast guests is what are your highbrow and lowbrow inspirations? And normally that’s kind of like when you’re thinking artistically, like, what is it that like is like, oh, this is the pinnacle of like high, fancy art. And then this is like the trash TV that really gives me life. And so we’d love to know what are your highbrow lowbrow inspirations? That can be like set related, tech related, TV related, whatever it is that intrigues you.

Georgia: Well, if we can also include TV, I definitely know what my terrible trash show is and I’m admitting it now to a podcast, it’s great. A burden lifted off of my chest. I love the Masked Singer. I, it’s, right?

Tenara: Talk about sets.

Georgia: Exactly. Why the heck am I – thank you. Look, those costumes. Are you kidding me? They are fantastic. And just, you know, they’re probably acting, whatever. But I believe them. And just coming to tears, some of them talking about like I have not been able to do this for forever because everyone assumes that like, oh, so-and-so doesn’t do that type of song, just the human interest, that journey. And these very famous — Patti LaBelle said something to the effect of, “this is the hardest job I’ve ever had.” I mean, it’s just fascinating to me. And everyone has such an amazing voice. It’s really incredible.

Tenara: This is sounding pretty high bar to me.

Georgia: I mean.

Raina: I feel like you had a lot to get off your chest.

Georgia: And there’s – I know, I didn’t even realize that it.

Tenara: Well, so, what’s your highbrow inspiration, if that is your lowbrow?

Georgia: The Simpsons.

Tenara: That’s pretty high brow.

Georgia: I’ve always felt like, I have started to create the paper in my brain of comparing The Importance of Being Earnest, for example, to The Simpsons and just talking about these jokes that are created in a way that if you don’t know anything, you laugh at it. And being able to do all of that in one joke, that is artistry. And if I’ve learned anything, comedy is hard.

Tenara: Yes.

Georgia: Comedy is really hard. And it’s incredible the things that they find and are able to make the masses laugh at. They can figure out how to do something that’s hilarious to a nation.

Tenara: Well Evelyn, you’ve got big thoughts to fill.

Georgia: She’s smarter than I am. She’s going to have some real answers for you.

Evelyn: So in terms of like, specifically thinking about design, like highbrow inspiration, I saw this production in, I think, when I was like in high school in the Williamstown Theater Festival, A Streetcar Named Desire. It was directed by David Cromer. I have pulled it up on my computer, light designed by Heather Gilbert. It was – they built this extremely photo realistic apartment building with no walls that the audience was seated, was sitting around. And it was this very like simple, spare, like, un-amplified version of this, of the streetcar. And I just remember this one scene where Blanche was talking with, I can’t remember the other, what other character I don’t know the show very well. And was sitting on the porch and talking with this person and the entire scene was lit by a bare light bulb in a different room in the apartment, just like coming through the front windows. I remember watching that being like, I can see everything perfectly. Like maybe there are other sort of like things happening. Maybe there’s something that I can’t see, but that like this is a totally different way to relate to lighting and a totally different way to relate to somebody on stage as being within an actual environment instead of within a simulacrum of an environment. Or without being am that being a moment that really blew my mind. The stupider one, the stupider inspiration was in last year’s, was last year’s – in last year’s Fringe Festival, Annie Wilson and Anita Holland did a cabaret night called Yesterday’s Garbage. The idea behind Yesterday’s Garbage is that it was people doing intentionally bad performance, just like the worst performers that they could. And Anita’s cousin had been at some family event and had really wanted to show off his beatboxing. But it was really inappropriate because it was like, I think a funeral, so, they were like no, you can’t beatbox at this funeral. That’s not, that’s not the right situation. But Anita was like, but this, this is the right situation for my cousin to show off beatboxing. So they Skyped him in to this performance and he was sitting there on his computer on Skype and was gonna beatbox to “Old Town Road.” And one of the interesting things about the way that Skype works is that it cuts out any sound that’s like coming from a source that isn’t the loudest source in the room, so if like, you’re talking into a mic and there’s like background noise in the room, it won’t play the background noise because it has like algorithms that will get rid of that. So he was playing “Old Town Road” on a stereo in his room while beatboxing into a mic. And the way that Skype worked meant that we could hear the instrumentals whenever he wasn’t beatboxing. And then when he was beatboxing, it was only him. And it was the funniest thing I had ever seen, because it was just this like 12 year old kid beatboxing as hard as he could to nothing at all. And then he would stop to take a breath, and then we’d hear Little Nas X. Little Nas X would disappear, and it’s a 12 year old beatboxing. Oh, and it was this really, it was like both incredibly funny, but also this like really wonderful moment of technology interacting with like, art in a way that was totally unexpected and also just delightful. Sort of the watching, watching technology break apart. And combine with people in sort of surreal ways to make something that was totally new. That was, that was a really amazing experience.

Tenara: Well, thank you to you both for sharing a little bit into the jobs that you do and into the corner of the sector that you two inhabit. I think it’s important for people to shout out our production and laborers is in the performing arts.

Georgia: I love bringing in people that don’t know anything about it, are curious about it. Makes me feel good to share my love.

Tenara: So if people are listening and they want to learn more about what it looks like to work in production, who should they e-mail? Is there like a

Georgia: There is, there’s a You are correct.

Tenara: Where does one go to RSVP for the job fair that’s coming up?

Raina: Well, you can find the event on our website. It is also a part of Philadelphia Theater Week. So you can find tickets on their website as well for Theater Philadelphia. And we thank you for joining us for this episode of Happy Hour on the Fringe. We’ll see you at the job fair and make sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram and download the FringeArts app.

Tenara: Woo!

Evelyn: Woohoo!