ELISE BREDENBERG, Arts & Entertainment Editor

The new production play “Dead Man’s Cell Phone” premiered on Wednesday, April 15, at the Jurkowitz Theatre. The cast and crew has met every day for seven weeks to rehearse the play. It is easy to forget how many people are involved in making the finished product, and perhaps the most important role for any play to go smoothly is the stage manager.

Mandy Sabedra is the stage manager and Nico Olascoaga is the assistant stage manager for this play. Sabedra is a second semester theatre major and Olascoaga is a first semester marketing major also pursuing acting. Being a stage manager requires a lot of focus and multitasking skills.

“Everything and anything that happens throughout the rehearsal process I do and then when the show starts I’m the one who call all the queues for the show… I’m the one who makes sure the light is going, the sound is going and I make sure that everybody is here. Pretty much in charge of everything,” said Sabedra.

During the play Sabedra sits in the control booth and operates light and sound, while Olascoaga is working backstage making sure all the props are where they need to be and help out with whatever problem may arise. He also transforms the stage in between scenes.

“You have to do a lot of different things a lot of things that a lot of people don’t really realize are there. Most people just focus on the acting or maybe the tech crew but the stage manager really makes sure everything is together, and I’m actually just the assistant stage manager, so what I do is make sure that the stage manager is okay. Because they have to do so much stuff that they can’t really focus on everything, so I’m there to make sure that they do cover everything, along with the director. We really just shadow the director and make sure the play goes perfectly,” said Olascoaga.

Stage managing take up a lot of time, they often stay late into the evening during the rehearsal process. What they both like with the long hours is that they get to know everyone involved in the play, from the actors and designers to the tech crew, and their hard work is noticed and appreciated by their coworkers.

“Oh, I think they’re great because they need to have everything under control and they need to think about so many things. So you know, I kinda admire them. I like them,” said Leona Paraminski.

The play director, Katie Laris, co-chair of the theater department, relies heavily on the stage managers. When the show starts it is all in their hands and Laris says they are both very committed and fit their roles perfectly. Commitment is the main ingredient for a successful show.

“We’re working almost every evening, we’re working almost every weekend. We’re working for three or four hours at a time, really diving in getting down the movement, getting down the words, figuring out the characters, and we’ve been doing this everyday for like six weeks, seven weeks. And now we’re finally about to open and we’ll see if that work all paid off,“ said Laris.