San Angelo Family Magazine - Jan '22

Page 9

The Performing Arts as a STEAM Engine of Opportunities

When most people talk about theatre or performing arts, the first thing that may come to mind is acting, dancing, or singing. What many may not realize is that there is an entire STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) mechanism in place—on stage and behind the scenes—to enhance the performer’s and audience member’s experience. Although coding and robotics have gained notoriety as core STEM components in recent years, there are many different opportunities available for young people to learn and experience practical STEAM applications. For example, a local theatre production always has requirements for set designers to construct modular or fixed structures; lighting technicians to create the right atmosphere, mood, and emphasis on stage; sound engineers to ensure a profound auditory experience; and electricians to make sure all the technology is powered adequately. Depending on the show, producers may also explore other high-tech options to leverage computer graphics and animation for a more vivid and innovative performance. Skills gained in the performing arts can then be applied to pursuing STEAM education or establishing businesses that provide technological support to large scale concerts and performances. Even in movies, the cast of actors remains small compared to the legion of animators, carpenters, lighting specialists, sound technicians, and engineers. If you have a young person that is an innovative, creative, and critical thinker who wants to learn and experience STEAM firsthand, I recommend visiting one of our many performing arts groups and venues in San Angelo. We’re always looking for volunteers to help produce an amazing show. Moreover, at the San Angelo Performing Arts Center (SAPAC), we offer freelance opportunities for people 16 years and older to work during the load-in, set-up, and show for national touring productions.

Stage hands work together to setup the stage for Million Dollar Quartet Christmas.

For more information, you can visit us online at or in person at 82 Gillis Street. We’ll help you get connected and answer any questions you have about the wonderful performing arts community we have in our city.

By Yukio Kuniyuki Managing Director, San Angelo Performing Arts Center

The sets of lights installed in the Murphey Performance Hall for the production of Million Dollar Quartet Christmas.

Laura Willig, Technical Director for SAPAC, operates the light board for the Dwight Yoakam concert.

San Angelo Family Magazine

January 2022


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