Hello Kansas City! My fellow UB Theatre & Dance students and I arrived yesterday afternoon and spent the evening exploring the city around the hotel.

Today the USITT Conference began. I registered and picked up my tag at 9:30 am then went and got coffee at the local market with some friends. At 11 am the Stage Expo Floor opened and it was a mass conflagration to reach the escalator to the floor in order to snatch all the free swag.

I spent much of the morning before my first session exploring the Stage Expo Floor. I met a man in a bunny suit and had my picture taken with him. Following this I made my way to the area of the floor that housed many booths looking for students interested in internships. Among my favorites were Cirque de Soleil, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and Disney. Sadly, Disney was not the one that wanted me. Disney said that they prefer taking on interns who are only focused in one area and nothing else. So unlike UB, versatility does not matter. Then I started talking to Steve from The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. I found the experience very rewarding and ended up giving him my resume and filling out an application for their internship. Later, I returned for a meeting and interview with him. It went really well and I hope something positive comes of it.

Following this I also went to two sessions. “Wanna Rock’n’Roll All Night” was a session that encompassed life on the road as a techie and a designer. It covered important details from hiring an accountant to what to know about your W-2 or 1099.

The second session I went to was “100 Years of Color in Stage Lighting.” Although this session was not what I thought it would be, I found it very interesting. The history of Rosco, a gel company goes back to the early 1900’s. The company began as a lamp dip company, coloring giant bulbs that were in streetlamps on the marquee. From there their industry as gel makers sky rocketed as WW1 began. Interestingly enough, types of gel that are no longer used within the entertainment industry are still produced and used for medical and light therapy research.

Overall today was a very exciting first day at USITT. I believe the entire week promises to be interesting and exciting. Soon enough you shall hear from me again.

Roger, Roger Breaker Nine… Over and Out!