Volunteers Make Our Theatre Work!!!
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The Community Playhouse of Lancaster County has a reputation for delivering fine quality shows made possible with the dedicated efforts of our countless volunteers. The obvious volunteers are seen on stage as performers, but behind the scenes are the many volunteers that keep this theater running.
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Each show requires at least 2-3 Ushers to make sure that all patrons attending the show receive a program and that each patron’s ticket is collected. In addition, the ushers answer questions from the patrons and direct them to a member of the Board of Directors when appropriate. In addition to ushers, each show also requires 2-3 Concessionaires to make sure that concessions are prepared and available during intermission.
Some of the costumes we use are rented, but more often than not, CPLC volunteers use our own stock, borrowed items, and items our costume crew makes to costume our shows. It takes hunting, altering, trimming, and sewing to prepare the costumes you see on stage. In addition, each night it takes from 2 to 6 people to see that everyone on stage is properly dressed and coifed. There is laundry to be done between performances. These volunteers put in well over 100 volunteer hours to dress even a small show.
Break out your black wardrobe! These are the people that run the smoke machine, move sets, make waves, run the main curtain, etc. The more complicated the set, the more volunteers needed.
Every performance someone has to be sure that each prop is where it belongs and in place when needed. This is the job done by Properties and a perfect place for the shy folks to volunteer.
Each show needs at least two people to run the light and sound boards. These are the people who keep the volume correct on the microphones, and create thunder and lightning. Some shows add a "follow spot" light and other special effects requiring more volunteer power. Most shows require about 50+ volunteer hours for lights and sound.
CPLC sets are all made and dressed with volunteer labor. In the week or two before the show opens, time is set aside for set construction. Everyone meets backstage, usually on Saturday and Sunday afternoons and works with the Set Manager to build the sets required for the show. Many volunteers come back during the week to finish up details and some are still working right up to the opening of the show.
Directly after the final performance the set is taken apart and the stage is emptied. This usually takes about three hours.
In addition to the volunteers needed to bring our shows to life on the stage, we also have volunteers to help keep the CPLC organization running. These volunteers are members of our standing committees and work closely with members of the Board of Directors to make sure that CPLC is on track toward meeting our long term goals.
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Members of this committee are always on the lookout for a possible location that CPLC can use as a permanent home. They seek out potential opportunities and meet with prospective site owners/developers to determine the feasibility of finding a permanent theatre site for the organization.
Members of this committee will work toward developing fundraising opportunities to provide CPLC with the necessary capital to acquire a permanent site when one is located. This can include developing fundraising events as well as talking with local businesses about capital donations.
Members of this committee work to write grant applications to submit to various local, state, federal, and private organization that donate money to organizations for various purposes, including ongoing operational expenses, capital building needs, and production costs. Volunteers with previous grant writing experience are especially needed on this committee.
CPLC is run by a 15 member working board of directors who organize and coordinate productions and take care of the day to day operational requirements of the organization. Director terms are for 3 years and run from July – June. If you would be interested in serving as a member of the board, let us know so you can be considered for future board vacancies.
So what is the grand total?
To create a CPLC show can take from 60 to 80 volunteers approximately 500 to 750 volunteer hours, excluding the many hours of rehearsal and performances by the cast. Without these behind-the-scenes volunteers there would be no "Show Biz" in Lancaster.
Wouldn't you like to help?
All of our hard-working volunteers say,
"It's a lot of fun, too!"
If you would be interested in joining our corps of volunteers, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Someone will contact you and welcome you to the CPLC Volunteer Team (and put you to work).