Ewa Czerniawska is studying Events Management and PR at the London Metropolitan University, spending this semester on an exchange program at Roosevelt University in Chicago. She is also a production intern at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University.
5 things you are allowed to do as an intern at the Auditorium Theatre, that you wouldn't be able to do anywhere else.
1. Jump in the middle of Michigan Avenue at noon and stop the traffic!
Well, it wasn't always at noon, but I did do it a couple of times. Our alley goes straight into Michigan Avenue so every time we have a load in or out, we have trucks coming in and out of the alley. There's no way to make it happen but to stop traffic for a couple of minutes.
2. Put the house curtains on fire!
Once in a while we have to do fireproofing tests on our curtains. So we cut little pieces of them (from the inside, so you can't see it) and we "try to put them on fire," by that I mean that someone holds a match underneath the curtain for 12 seconds and then fire has to extinguish in the next 2 seconds. If it does, it means the curtains are flame-resistant.
3. Telling executives what to do!
Not really… but sometimes they want to give a speech before the show, so by telling them what to do, I mean giving them stage cues.
4. Witness a miracle.
A wardrobe lady didn't make it to the show one day; so we set up a quick changing room at the back of the stage with 500 costumes! It was truly unbelievable.
5. Hang out in the “locked” parts of the building.
You get to climb up above the arches to see how and where they change all the light bulbs. You also get to go to the basement where the air-conditioning system is located. There is a small room where it is really windy and you get the feeling like you are in the movies and something is about to suck you in. But once you learn how it all works you realize that it's perfectly safe.
As interesting as it may sound these things are not nearly as important as the things you learn. As an intern you get to see and be a part of all the day-by-day operations of the theatre. The internship allows you to understand how all the departments work together to deliver a show. And with all the help for the staff, by the end of the internship, I guarantee you will be ready for your first job in the theatre.
Our internship program offers students the opportunity for hands-on learning alongside professionals working in the performing arts industry.