Picture Perfect Performances

Nov. 27, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

There’s something fun and magical about seeing a stage production. Be it dramatic, tragic, or comedic; through prose or song the experience is one to be enjoyed by all ages.

Requiring just the right amount of imagination and occasional suspension of disbelief, the stage play, musical and theatrical show respectively, harken back to an artistic form of entertainment that is steeped in rich heritage, class and culture.

It has been my pleasure over the past few years to be offered the opportunity to serves as photographer, in service of The Rutherford County Arts Council (RCAC), for a good many of such performances.

The request to chronicle the entertaining actions on stage came from the show’s director himself Mr. Matthew McEnnerney. A true thespian at heart, Matthew is someone who enjoys sharing, though casual conversation, a vast assortment of stories that exude as much amusement as intellect.

Matthew’s wife Diane serves as Musical Director and along with performing the music live during the show she also writes the majority of the original and entertaining plays.

This husband and wife team bring a powerful combination of talent to each project they present to an audience and are joined by a talented staff of crew members, designers, and volunteers.

It goes without saying that that for all the talent backstage, the RCAC finds itself with equal amounts onstage.

With casts topping a hundred at times and each scene is expertly choreographed by Lynne Tanner. Her attention to the arrangement of each actor on stage causes each show to bound to life with song, dance and color.

It is the joy of seeing these performers in different roles and costumes time after time, that for me has been a personal attraction towards my continued involvement with the photography of the plays.

It has been rewarding to get to see actors grow and mature into bigger more involving roles over the years. Some were just children when I first saw them take the stage, performing on the side as part of a cute chorus.

Now those same players have found their individual strengths as actors and own each and every lead they are given.

There is also something to be said of the age range of the talent performing together during an RCAC production. It is the mixture of very young actors sharing scenes with much older adults that lends to much enjoyment for the audience.

As each, regardless of their age, takes their roles seriously and clearly enjoys every moment of the experience. The invitation of such an experience is one that in some instances draws whole families into the spotlight. As many times siblings, children, parents, and grand parents share center stage together, scene after scene.

I am still in awe each time I take position down front and wait for the lights to go dim. As I zoom in on a touching solo, or pull wide to capture a rousing chase scene, seeing the performance through my camera lens never fails to pull me deeper and deeper into the world being crafted on stage.

I try to keep close watch for those special little moments that happen so swiftly. Be it an exaggerated gesture, or the perfect expression on a face, it’s these captured stills that I delight in being fortunate to get from time to time.

All in all, attending a Rutherford County Arts Council performance is more than satisfactory when it comes to a good time. If you have not yet experienced it for yourself then I highly recommend doing so next time round. And for those of you who have been to one before... well now you know who that weird guy is scurrying around back and fourth up front in the dark with a camera.

For information about upcoming shows visit www.rutherfordarts.com to find out more.