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Celebrating the Alice in Wonderland Run Crew

Posted on March 21, 2024

At each performance of Alice in Wonderland there are 15 Run Crew (Backstage, Wardrobe, Lighting and Sound) members making all the onstage magic happen.  Read on to learn more about a few of these incredible folks and their roles during the show. 

Alice in Wonderland Run Crew Member, Nicholas Prax

This is Nicholas Prax’s 2nd season on the Run Crew. Working off a 38-page shift plot created by Assistant Stage Manager Z Makila, he puts an actor in the Jabberwock head harness, flies scenery in and out, and is part of the chairs sliding in and out choreography during the Mad Hatter Tea Party scene. In addition, he runs the automation. What is automation?” you might ask. It’s the system that allows scenery to move onstage at the touch of a button. For example, when he hits “GO” on a computer backstage, the stove that the Duchess is standing on moves into the scene with fiery lights and bellowing smoke.  

Alice in Wonderland Run Crew Member, Charles Filmore

Charles Fillmore is the Head Stage Carpenter in charge of the Run Crew. In addition to an overarching responsibility for making sure everyone is safe backstage, Charles flies scenery in and out and makes the magic of the Humpty Dumpty ladder happen along with Eric Lucas. He is also responsible for repairing anything that breaks. You can often find him in the shop, glueing, sewing, welding, rebuilding. He has to have an amazing number of skills to keep this show thriving for 63 performances. 

Alice in Wonderland Run Crew Member, Rick Berger

Rick Berger has been working with CTC for 24 years in the sound department. He mics actors and Victor Zupanc, Alice in Wonderland’s one -man-band. During the show he’s at the board, actively “mixing the show.” When there are big groups of people on stage, he has to balance the mics so one person isn’t sticking out.It’s different every time you do it. Actors are never the same everyday. It’s not fully automatic. You have to hear it, feel it, and control it.” 

Alice in Wonderland Run Crew, Meghan Gaffney

Meghan Gaffney’s in her 3rd season on Run Crew. To prepare for the show, you’ll find her making gak (a fantastic mix of Elmer’s glue, water, yellow food coloring and borax) for use as the drooping butter in the Mad Hatter Tea Party scene.  

During the show, she’s under the stage carefully completing her list of critical tasks. She and Eric Lucas give the student actors psychological safety as they jump down the rabbit hole. They look the actor in the eye and let them know everything is set and safe for them to jump. They then check in with the actor after every jump to see how that was for them. Did it feel any different? Do they have any concerns?  

Meghan is also the force behind some of the props magic at the Tea Table—puppeting the Dormouse and setting off the confetti canon when she gets the signal.  

Wardrobe Run Crew of Alice in Wonderland

The wardrobe team is responsible for characters’ quick changes. Head of Wardrobe Andi Soehren (16 seasons with CTC) has a little nest behind Humpty Dumpty’s wall where she waits patiently as he sways back and forth. After his great fall, she helps actor Dean Holt change from his whole egg head into a cracked one in the few seconds before he reemerges.  

Actor Janely Rodriguez plays Edith and the Duchess and is a member of the Ensemble. Throughout the show she has 4 make-up changes as well as a super quick change into her Duchess costume. Wardrobe crew quickly and efficiently prepare for her entrance as the Duchess; Julia Kugler updates her cheek and eyebrow makeup while Jennifer “Jam Face” Probst (11 seasons at CTC) helps her with her shoes and her dress.  

“It takes so many people to make a play happen and these are some of the fantastic people who do that. That means there are lots of different jobs in theatre.” – Jenny Friend, CTC Production Stage Manager

There are indeed. Today, we tip our hats to this vitally important crew—the Run Crew!

To learn more about CTC’s production of Alice in Wonderland and to purchase tickets, visit