My family always helps a lot with each production. Mom gets to see choreography and read things first, and is one I bounce ideas off of. Jubilee is also great for discussing ideas with - she's not afraid to tell me if something looks or sounds silly. Mom and Jubilee are always willing to help set up/take down things before and after rehearsals. Elijah videotapes if he's available, and Lydia helps in whatever way she can; this time she's running the spotlight!
For "Beyond Bethlehem," my dad has really gone the extra mile. He's always helped and supported each production, from setting things up to running sound, to acting in it if I need him to, although memorization is hard for him. But for this one, he has devoted a lot of time to researching and ordering the right theatre fixtures (lights) and control equipment for me, finding the best deal and lending me the money until I can pay them off (which should be soon!). He designed and built the stands to hang the lights on, since he could get the materials cheaper than we could order them ready-made. But, that meant he had to spend many extras hours buying, building, and testing them.
On Monday, we spent 7 hours at Fountain of Grace together. He set up the stands and hung each of the 8 fixtures as I organized costumes and props. He then tested the lights, focused them, and showed me how to control them, then patiently waited while I figured out the cues. Finally, around 8:45 PM we headed home, still not having eaten supper. Yet, he never complained.
The next day, he drove with me to pick up the backdrops I'm borrowing from a friend. They were dirty from having been stored in a barn, so he helped me wash them, even as it started to rain. After treating me to lunch, he helped me set up the dividers, then programmed the light cues while I hung the curtains. Things always take longer than you'd planned, and 5 hours had passed from the time we started out until the time we got home. After a quick supper (thanks to Jubilee and Mom's preparations) and only around an hour at home, it was back to Fountain of Grace for the evening rehearsal. He ran the light board for two hours, and then helped put things away before heading home.
I truly am blessed with a wonderful father - and a wonderful family. Thank you all for helping so much! These productions could never happen without you.