All we see on stage when we go to see a play are the actors and the set pieces. We notice the lights and sound, and maybe the tech crew, but there are so many parts to running a fully-functioning theater that people may not realize. I considered myself pretty knowledgeable about all things theater, but I still had a lot to learn on my mini-mentorship with Robert Hankin, the Associate Director of Development at ACT Theatre. He was a great person to have as a guide and mentor for the day because he said he has had nine different positions in his nine years at ACT!
I was surprised by the dozens and dozens of people who work behind the scenes to make everything run smoothly. A few departments I can rattle off: Development (a.k.a. fundraising), Sales, Marketing, Graphic Design, Casting, Costuming, Set Design, Tech Design, Outreach, Front-of-House, Executive Team, Artistic Team, and more! I remember meeting one person in the elevator who's only job was to paint things. In a large-scale theater like ACT, so many different moving pieces have to work together cohesively. What mattered was that everyone cared about what they were doing and enjoyed putting in the effort to create amazing theater.