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Spotlight on new Technical Theater class

Technical Theater, a new class, is being taught by Erin Beatie. Photo by Josh Racine

Beginning a new year at Bear River means the introduction of several new things; friends, teachers, and classes.

This year brought with it a Technical Theater class for the first time, taught by Theater Manager Erin Beatie. So far, Mrs. Beatie has been quite the hit among students, even those who didn’t expect to be in her class.

“Well, originally, I didn’t even sign up for the class, I was kinda just put in it,” said Junior Erik LaCoss. “I was going to switch out of it, but I started to somewhat enjoy it, because Erin’s pretty funny, and then a few of my friends were in it, and that’s where I was like, ‘eh, why not? It’d be something fun to do.’”

Other students, such as Senior Isabella Christmon, look up to Mrs. Beatie as a mentor.

“I’ve always kind of wanted to be in technical theater,” said Christmon. “My Sophomore year is when I really got involved, and then Erin moved to BR and she really knew what she was doing. She’s helping me thrive in theater.”

Junior Robyn Means shared a similar view, having taken the class three years in a row.

“I’ve taken it before at my old school, with Erin,” said Means. “It’s actually a really fun class; once I got into it, I just didn’t want to leave, I didn’t want to stop.” 

Mrs. Beatie explained what she looked forward to most teaching this class.

“… Watching the kids go from a beginner level to where they can do a show on their own.”

Mrs. Beatie has taught kids at previous schools certain skills, depending on how advanced they are, and stated what each level learns.

“Tech 1 is the basics to all of the elements: lights, sound, makeup costumes,” she said. “Then, they get to hone in on what they’re good at and focus on that. Tech 2 hones in on special effects and rigging skills. It really hones in on more the physical side of a show. It really focuses on math.”

According to Mrs. Beatie, this class teaches skills that can prepare students for future careers in the backstage and technological sides of the theater. Managing, production, video, and design are just some of the options.

“I’m looking forward to furthering my knowledge in technical theater because I think I want to stick with this past high school,” Christmon said.

This class doesn’t just apply to the theater, either.

“It certainly is not a bird [easy] class, however, it is training you for real life situations, but it’s being applied in a theater,” said Mrs. Beatie.

This class isn’t just about technology; it includes lots of math as well.

“I expected it to be much smaller, and I didn’t expect there to be math in rigging, but there’s a lot of it,” said Christmon. “I’m having fun so far.”

Regardless of how much math is involved, the students seem to enjoy the class.

“I would recommend it to people that want to take something that has to do with theater and they don’t want to do choir or anything like that,” said LaCoss.

Enjoyment of this class is all that Mrs. Beatie wants students to remember when looking back on it.

“That they had a good time, because life is too short to not have fun,” Mrs. Beatie said.“I just want them to have fun and be able to remember at least one thing they can use in their lives.”

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Spotlight on new Technical Theater class