Saturday, January 20, 2018

Water and Lights Don't Mix

By Sully Sullivan, from the Theater Cop series by J. A. Hennrikus

You know, back when I was on the police force, I appreciated theater. I thought I knew what went into it--after all my mother had volunteered at the Cliffside the entire time I was growing up, and I'd painted my share of flats. Handed out my share of programs. But now that I'm running the theater? I had no idea how what it takes to put on a show. Or the hard work that it takes to make magic.
This afternoon I was in a production meeting for a show they want to do next year. They're talking about a pool of water, rain, and crashing waves during the show. Pools of blood spurting during the fight scene. An actor flying in the final scene.
Now, it's times like this I can't help but recall my days on the beat. I never saw someone fly, but I did see more than my fair share of blood. I'd also learned that water and electricity don't go together. That's a story for another day. I've got to admit, when they talked about waves and rain onstage, all I could think about is the lights.
"Isn't that dangerous?" I asked.
"We'll make it safe," the technical director said. Then she started going on about where the cables go, and grounding, and actor safety being the top priority.
I looked at her, carefully. Until that moment, I hadn't realized that trust, always an elusive emotion for me, was necessary every day in theater. Trust was as essential here as it had been in the police station. Trust in both physical and emotional safety.
Thanks to the Cliffside, I was getting it back.

BIO: J.A. Hennrikus writes the Theater Cop series. Julianne Holmes writes the Clock Shop series. They both tweet as @JHAuthors, and are on Instagram as @JAHenn


  1. I'd love to red A CHRISTMAS PERIL. Absolutely love the cover!

  2. Water, blood, & a flying actor all seem difficult & dangerous for a live performance.

  3. This sounds like an interesting read. I have to admit water, blood, & a flying actor seem really difficult & very dangerous for a live performance.