By Alex Tawid, BFA Stage and Production Management ’23
This is my first Emerson Stage show. I mention this first because everything I experienced throughout this process was completely new to me, from my first production meeting to stumble through rehearsals to the long days of tech week. I had never experienced something like this, and looking back I can confidently say this is a show I will remember well into the future.
Being a Production Assistant gave me an inside look at the Stage Management team as well as what goes on inside the rehearsal room. One of my favorite things about being a Stage Manager is getting to be a part of the entire process. I am mesmerized watching the actors break down their technique and build it back up again around their characters. Unfortunately, I can’t do any of that, but I enjoy watching the actors do so and in the end we all end up creating this show together!
Augusta and Noble has been a particularly special experience because I am an immigrant from Venezuela. Coming here wasn’t easy, but I’ve taken advantage of all the opportunities I’ve been given and found my passion in Stage Management. I understand the struggle and hardships people face when trying to make a better world for themselves and for their kids immigrating here. Listening in on the conversations the cast would have with our director brought to light the very real and very difficult journey many Mexican immigrants made coming to the United States. I witnessed the actors relate their own stories to those of the characters and be vulnerable to the experience. There were hard days in the rehearsal room, when we all read the “Guia de Emigrante Mexicano” (“Guide to Mexican Immigration”) and looked through pictures of the real Devil’s Highway. What the actors are putting on stage is a collaborative piece that’s gone through many layers of discovery and learning. This show is special for so many different reasons, and I’m incredibly lucky to be a part of the team that helped bring this message to our audience.
I’ve learned so much watching my peers put everything they’ve learned into this show, and it’s easy to say I am very excited to one day take on the role of Stage Manager for an Emerson Stage show. I want to take this moment to thank the amazing SM team I was so privileged to work with on this show! Our wonderful Stage Manager Jordan, is a great role model and I hope one day to be as talented and funny as her (Ajo means garlic!). Nahaira and Katie, the first and second ASM respectively, have taught me so much about managing this giant production with such ease. Kylie, my partner in crime and second Production Assistant, is always ready to do whatever is needed and has made this experience incredible. It takes a true village to put this show together, and I thank this amazing team for making it seem effortless.
Getting to sit in on the process and seeing the things I’m learning in class being put into action has not only solidified my decision to pursue this career, but has made me excited for what’s to come. I’ve shared unforgettable moments with the Stage Management team and beyond that created memorable and lasting relationships that I hope I keep beyond my college years. I’m beyond proud of the show we’ve created and can’t wait to share this story with many others this week!