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Students Get Backstage Look at National Touring Hello Dolly


Jeff Larson, resident designer and production manager for Theatre, took a group of Theatre students to the Stanley Theater in Utica last week, where they were given an in-depth backstage tour of the upcoming national touring production of Hello Dolly by Tony-winning sound designer Scott Lehrer.

Students also met and asked questions of Tony award-winning set and costume designer Santo Loquasto, Tony Award-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz, and production stage manager William Barnes, as well as numerous technical support staff.

Being able to see the mechanisms utilized in the show both up close and in use was such a unique experience that I will never forget.

Larson and students returned to the Stanley on Sept. 24 to watch the dress rehearsal before the show opened for a two-night performance on Sept. 25.

Aaron Simons ’22 said, “Last Friday, we were able to go backstage and see the set pieces, costumes, props, lighting and sound boards, and how all of the parts of the production come together for a national tour. Last night, we had the incredible opportunity to watch their dress rehearsal, so we could see all the lights and sound in action. It was very interesting to see the inner-workings of the theater.”

“Going back to see it during one of the dress rehearsals gave us the opportunity to see the things the team had discussed implemented in the actual production, and allowed it to really come to life," said Eric Nahm '21.

Erin Urbaniak ’21 added, “Being able to see the mechanisms utilized in the show both up close and in use was such a unique experience that I will never forget. All of the cast and crew were so down-to-earth and humble, even if they were world-famous in their craft. The show itself was downright gorgeous, and I wish I could go back and see it every night so I would never miss a second!”

Sound designer Scott also visited Larson’s Intro. to Production class and spoke to the students about his process as a sound designer.

The production concludes at the Stanley on Sept. 26, before setting off on a year-long national tour.

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