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Flying & falling fantasy a magical favorite

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Mary Poppins comes to the Bowie stage

HOLIDAY+WITH+MARY%3A+While+taking+a+stroll+in+the+park%2C+%E2%80%9CA%E2%80%9D+cast+members%2C+senior+Maddy+Sparkes+and+Blake+Pousson%2C+who+play+Mary+Poppins+and+Burt%2C+sing+and+dance+to+the+song+%E2%80%9CJolly+Holiday%E2%80%9D+during+the+first+act+of+the+musical.+Sparkes+had+always+dreamed+of+playing+Mary+Poppins.%E2%80%9DMary+Poppins+is+actually+my+dream+role+so+getting+to+play+that+was+like+amazing%2C+like+is+this+really+happening%2C%E2%80%9D+Sparkes+said.++
HOLIDAY WITH MARY: While taking a stroll in the park, “A” cast members, senior Maddy Sparkes and Blake Pousson, who play Mary Poppins and Burt, sing and dance to the song “Jolly Holiday” during the first act of the musical. Sparkes had always dreamed of playing Mary Poppins.”Mary Poppins is actually my dream role so getting to play that was like amazing, like is this really happening,” Sparkes said.

HOLIDAY WITH MARY: While taking a stroll in the park, “A” cast members, senior Maddy Sparkes and Blake Pousson, who play Mary Poppins and Burt, sing and dance to the song “Jolly Holiday” during the first act of the musical. Sparkes had always dreamed of playing Mary Poppins.”Mary Poppins is actually my dream role so getting to play that was like amazing, like is this really happening,” Sparkes said.

Photo by: Violet Glenewinkel

Photo by: Violet Glenewinkel

HOLIDAY WITH MARY: While taking a stroll in the park, “A” cast members, senior Maddy Sparkes and Blake Pousson, who play Mary Poppins and Burt, sing and dance to the song “Jolly Holiday” during the first act of the musical. Sparkes had always dreamed of playing Mary Poppins.”Mary Poppins is actually my dream role so getting to play that was like amazing, like is this really happening,” Sparkes said.

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The crowd holds their breath as senior Blake Pousson hangs upside down from the top of the stage, his voice carrying throughout the theatre. How did he get up there? What some don’t realize is that tons of theatre technicians are constantly working backstage to bring the show to life, including lifting up Pousson and “A” cast member sophomore Eric Larson to walk on the ceiling every night.

This year’s musical, Mary Poppins, featured some of the most extensive tech equipment and systems that the Starlight Theatre Company has ever used before: there’s projections, lighting, set, fly, costumes, makeup, sound, and even magic.

“I’m shocked that we actually got [the musical] done on time,” fly crew member junior Shelby Papst said. “It’s always a push towards the end to get everything finished on time and we got a lot we need to get done… and before you know it, it’s show week. Time is just not in our favor, ever.”

Photo by: Cara Andres
STEP IN TIME: Sophomore Eric Larson who plays Burt sings to the song “Step in Time” with other chimney sweepers. Technicians have to make sure complications such as wires getting tangled don’t happen. ”Sometimes they will collide in mid-air and their wires wrap each other,” junior Emma Thomas said.

While every show has the basic tech, the new inclusion of magic brought new animation to the set. One of which is bag magic, where props master junior Emma Thomas sits behind a set piece and delivers props to Mary Poppins’s iconic bag through a hole in the wall.

“It takes a lot more work than a lot of people would think it does because we build everything from scratch– it’s a lot of work,” Thomas said. “But our job is to remain

Photo by: Ashley Ramirez
BEING MRS. BANKS: Playing Mrs. Banks is senior Piper Kopser who sings her solo ballad. Technicians prepare for the next scene.”While I was singing, the tech crew had to roll on the parlor set piece and some techies under the stage were setting up the fog machine for the next scene,” Kopser said.

unseen, so we do all of that for really not a lot of credit so that’s kind of the point. But it is extremely satisfying if you do your job right.”

According to technicians, the smoothest part of tech’ing for the show was actually the fly.

The STC hired an outside company to assist them. Papst operates part of the walk that Bert takes on the stage, taking either Pousson or Larson across the top each night.

“Watching him up there [for the first time]… it was hard to keep working because everybody was just… stunned,” Papst said. “Every night, seeing the audience freak out for it, that’s probably one of the best parts. I don’t even know if the audience gets as excited as the technicians do just seeing it happen. The first time, it was like, ‘that’s magic.’”                 

Photo by: Cara Andres
COMING TO LIFE: Senior Blake Pousson comes to life on stage as the statue Neleus, during the song “Jolly Holiday. Pedestals for the statues were made with wheels so that transitions would be easy. “ We built many rolling pedestals to give the statues a place to stand but also transition smoother,” senior Shelby Kelly said.

Mary Poppins came to an end on January

Photo by: Violet Glenewinkel
BUTLER DOWN: Knocked out by Jane and Michael’s trick is Jack Maedgen who plays Roberston. A lot of time and effort go into the production of the musical and many technicians don’t leave right away. “Ten O’clock through twelve O’clock, but at least ten,” senior Sam Searles said.

21 with the cast’s last performance of “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” as they ran off stage. After weeks of preparing, the techs finally saw their hard work take on a life of its own.

“It’s a lot, and it’s so much on you and your body and your mind that you’re like ‘oh my gosh this is really hard,’ but in the end it’s so worth it because I love showing art and working with all of the technicians,” head tech senior Shelby Kelley said. “It’s so worth it and I’m proud of what we have done so far.”

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Flying & falling fantasy a magical favorite