The Art of Stage Craft


Ana Generelli, Entertainment Editor

If you take part in any art classes, you’ve probably heard that Grease is the word at South. From April 7th to April 9th, Middletown High School South performed their rendition of the musical Grease for this year’s spring musical. Now, the finished product never fails to disappoint, but there is some sense of curiosity when it comes to what goes on behind the scenes of the musical. To find out more, I interviewed Mr. Kozak, one of the heads of the show, and we talked about the production process for the musicals as well as how Grease was the first in-person musical since before quarantine.

Question: How long does planning the annual musical production take, from picking the musical to opening night?

“It takes a full year. We start talking about the next musical in the spring after the previous musical, and we look at the cast we have as well as what musicals we want to do. We’ve never redone a show before yet. All of our musicals have been new ground for us.”

Question: Since the previous year when it was difficult to create a stage performance, how has going back to proper stagecraft been?

“It’s been great – the cast is very excited. It was possible to adapt virtually, but it’s not the same as actually seeing other people in a room. There’s really good energy among the cast this year.”

Question: Was there anything specific that you learned from adapting to last year’s production?

“During that year, we actually got people in our cast that wouldn’t normally try out. There was more opportunity for others to get roles that they wouldn’t normally have tried out for in the past.”

Question: Did you miss anything specific about the original production process?

“Definitely theater games- it was difficult to do them virtually. There was a sense of competition and interaction with the games when they were in person.”

Question: Have you tried any new techniques regarding production? Anything you’re excited about?

“It’s actually the opposite this year- we’re doing it more traditionally than we usually do. We usually put a spin on our musicals, but we wanted to do something bouncy and fun this year.”


With this new information, hopefully, you can watch South’s performances with a new lens and a new perspective on how the shows come together. From the tech crew behind the curtains to the actors you see on stage to the precise details on the props, those behind South’s shows never fail to put on a fantastic performance for all of us in the audience.