The magic of Spring Sing happens in about seven seconds, according to technical producer Ben Jones.
“One of the biggest things that audiences look for, but don’t even know they’re looking for, is the way we transition from one moment to the next,” Jones said. “That’s the magic of what we do here.”
In past productions, Jones said club performers are told they will have about seven seconds after the audience applauds to get behind the main house curtain, which then masks the transition to the next show.
Not this year.
“The biggest difference between this year’s show and any show I’ve ever done before is that there is no act (house) curtain,” Jones said.
Jones said that in theater, when you can not hide something, you have to emphasize it. This year, instead of hiding the backstage region with a curtain to allow clubs to set up their show, the Spring Sing 2015 set has an open design, according to director Steven Frye.
Frye said that if the production team and the performers do their jobs correctly, the audience should not notice any striking disimilarities between this year and past years. Rather, the production will be different, but the difference will be pleasing and will not be something that is readily apparent.
“Spring Sing without an act curtain becomes more like a concert venue than a traditional play or musical,” Frye said.
Junior Thomas Williams, a member of the Spring Sing ensemble for the past three years, said he will miss the energy and the anticipation of waiting behind the curtain for an entrance.
“It has given us a little more work to do, having to discuss and plan interesting entrances and exits,” Williams said. “But that has helped push the show in new directions. … And who knows? Maybe without that barrier the energy will be even greater.”
Despite the absence of the house curtain, Jones said the magic of Spring Sing is still in the transitions.
“The sheer idea that we put a 100 or 120 people on stage for seven minutes, and then in five minutes we have another group of 80 to a 100 people on stage ready to go, all while a different group of people is singing and dancing on stage — that’s what amazes people each year,” Jones said.