While you’re fixated on that glowing spotlight shining on the star soloist during the choir concert you probably don’t know to look up at the auditorium ceiling. Little did you know, that spotlight is shining from Catwalks directly above the auditorium.
The Catwalks are a series of passages that maneuver throughout a large open room above the auditorium. They house all of the different lights in the auditorium and is where the lights are maintained and operated.
In order to gain access to the Catwalks, one must walk to the back of the auditorium into the lights booth, which holds the control board for the lights. In the lights booth sits a separate room called the Bat Cave, where extra lights, extension cords, etc. are stored. In the Bat Cave there is a tall, iron staircase up to the Catwalks.
When first entering the Catwalks, you will see wood boards traveling in different lines all the way up the room. These boards serve as transportation to the different lights.
After climbing over a few ledges and stairs, the Catwalks come to an end. At the end of the Catwalks sits the spotlights, where a work crew member must sit during every performance to operate it.
Senior Hunter Sodek became involved in work crew during his freshman year, and has been learning more about operating the lights ever since.
According to Sodek, most are unfamiliar with what the Catwalks are until he explains it to them. However once he explains the concept to them, they are eager to learn more.
“Every time I tell someone I work in the Catwalks, their first reaction is ‘Can you take me up there?’” Sodek said.
Even though the Catwalks are a virtually unknown part of the auditorium, they play a role in almost every aspect of a production.
All of the house lights, spot lights, and miscellaneous lights shining during any production are housed in the Catwalks.
Freshman Zoey Davis recently got involved with work crew, and has been learning a lot since.
“All of the lights seem like a lot at first, but now that I have started learning about them I’m having a lot of fun” Davis said.
According to Sodek, students become involved in work crew through the drama department.
“My freshman year I was in theater and people were announcing work crew meetings all the time, and one day I decided to go and I’ve been involved ever since” Sodek said.
Even though the Catwalks are virtually unknown to most students, they are a fascinating idea. With graffiti left on the walls from graduated seniors, and wobbling floor boards, the Catwalks always hold an interesting story.