|Palm Beach Atlantic University junior theatre arts major Alina Castillo meets with "War Horse" Company Manager Steve Varon (right) and Assistant Company Manager Matthew Lerner at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach.|
The Tony award-winning play “War Horse,” known for the elaborate puppetry that brings the title character to life, is expected to play to large crowds this weekend at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach.
But few theater lovers will get to experience the show from the vantage point of Palm Beach Atlantic University student Alina Castillo, who this week is serving as an intern for Company Manager Steve Varon.
She will have an opportunity to see how the show operates from load-in, which took place earlier in the week, through the end of the show’s run on Sunday.
One of her duties this week was to assist with a workshop that was presented by the “War Horse” company for high school and college students, said Castillo, a junior majoring in theatre arts. The workshop took place earlier today.
She is learning how to read the box office reports and about payroll processing procedures, as well as observing pre-show duties of the company manager, meeting with union workers in charge of wardrobe, props and stage management, and witnessing several other aspects of the show.
Castillo is the third PBA student to intern with a company manager for a Broadway Series show at the Kravis Center. The program, offered through the Kravis Center’s Education and Community Outreach division, is a joint initiative between The Broadway League and Association of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers (ATPAM) to develop and encourage theatrical managers from diverse backgrounds.
|Palm Beach Atlantic University junior theatre arts major Lissette Kortright joins “Porgy and Bess” Company Manager Erik Birkeland backstage at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach.|
Last month, junior theatre arts major Lissette Kortright interned with “Porgy and Bess” Company Manager Erik Birkeland. Last year, PBA senior Michelle Santiago interned with the company manager for the show “Billy Elliot.”
Kortright hopes someday to perform on stage, but she said her internship allowed her an inside look at other career possibilities as well. “It made me fall in love with other departments,” she said, adding that she now has an interest in stage management.
She also now wants to be part of a touring company at least once in her career, even though it requires being on the road for months at a time, she said.
In addition, she said she learned about company management, which handles box office transactions and transportation scheduling, among other things. “It’s a lot of paperwork,” Kortright said.
She said that her first piece of advice for Castillo was to journal every day of her internship. Also, she advised trying “to have a conversation with every person that you can,” she said.
These types of experiences are extremely valuable to students, said Don Butler, associate professor of theatre at PBA. “It’s like something you would only get if you were in New York,” he said.
“Any time you can learn from the best in the business, that’s important.”