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Managing the Wondrous

By Monika Cruson, Stage Manager Extraordinaire

If there was any one word I would use to describe Sweet Tea Shakespeare it would be joy, pure unadulterated joy; seven year old on Christmas morning joy. It is with that in mind that I say stage managing with Sweet Tea Shakespeare over the past 6 months has been an overwhelmingly delightful adventure, which I’m sure I won’t always have the privilege of saying.

When I started stage managing for Sweet Tea just a short 6 months ago I wasn’t sure of exactly what to expect, my high school theatre teacher (Medina Demeter, Trinculo & Antonio in The Tempest) told me about the SM opening and I leapt at the chance to gain some much needed experience. I was nervous and probably a little awkward but I was met with immense warmth and grace, which I am ever grateful for.

There is a little something called LOVE floating around Sweet Tea and it’s infectious. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that I have become a better version of myself because of the people in Sweet Tea and the proximity with which we all work and live together; we share our space, emotions, books, jokes, and most importantly food. Despite the arduous rehearsals, there is nowhere I would rather be than in the company of my Sweet Tea family. Simply put, they are the light of my life. If I could go back in time the only thing I would change is that I would meet this unbelievable family that I have gained earlier.

This may seem like a goodbye blog post and in a way it is, in August I’ll be leaving for The University of North Carolina School of the Arts to further pursue my stage management career but I know that every time I come back home I will encounter more magic, love, and joy than I did when I left; a present I will always be willing to tear open.

I’ve said, or typed rather, this bittersweet tearjerker to tell you that if you’re looking for an open sanctuary to have fun and create otherworldly theatre Sweet Tea Shakespeare is the community for you, even if you’re not an actor. We’re always looking for anyone willing to participate in our magic.