Photo: Belmont High’s Sara Nelson and Nomi Vilvovsky with their “Best Stage Management’ award from the Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild.
They are the unsung heroes back stage at a play or musical; providing actors their cues, oversee the tech crew, assist the director, making sure props are either off or on stage while keeping the show moving.
And for a production with as many moving parts – dancers, singers, actors, musicians – as this spring’s Belmont High School Performing Arts Company production of the Cole Porter musical “Anything Goes,” stage managers Sara Nelson and Nomi Vilvovsky, along with assistant managers Sophia Lubarr, Georgia Sundahl and Eli Dearden, where like jugglers being thrown an ever increasing number of balls to shuffle, with the expectation they would keep all of them in the air.
This past Monday, June 15, Nelson and Vilvovsky were honored for their organization and professional mastery by being awarded “Best Stage Management” in the High School Division at the annual Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild awards ceremony held in Boston.
More than 70 Middle and High School productions were adjudicated by professional theater artists and educators and awards were given in a number of technical and performance categories.
“The award is a recognition not just of our strong team of student stage managers, but also the level of cohesion in all elements of the production: scenery and set changes, lighting, props, costumes, sound, actors and musicians,” noted Ezra Flam, “Anything Goes” producer and director.
In addition to the Stage Management Award, BHS PAC received nominations – which went to the top five schools in each category – for Best Dance Ensemble, Best Specialty Ensemble (the Sailors in the show) and Best Supporting Actor, Henry Dalby, as Moonface Martin.