A Sit-Down With Nick Falcone, Pit Orchestra Member, and a Behind-the-Scenes Take on Ridge High School Productions

“My name is Nick Falcone, I am a senior in the pit orchestra, and this is my second year. I play alto and tenor saxophone. The pit orchestra is a live orchestra that exists below the stage. Yes, the music you hear in the musical is all performed live by a mix of professional and student performers. Overall the pit consists of around 20-30 members playing anything from piano to violin to trumpet. When all the instruments come together, with the help of a few mics, they create the harmonious music heard throughout the audience. The pit usually starts rehearsing on its own two months before the opening night. However the week before opening night, dubbed “Tech Week” for reasons unbeknownst to me, everyone in the pit moves down to the physical pit (which is a secret area beneath the stage) below the stage and starts rehearsing with the rest of the production. Rehearsals last about 3-4 hours during tech week, but can be even longer during the weekend rehearsals. Overall the rehearsal experience is a ton of fun as it is when most of the professional players join us, which gives the group a huge boost. Once the show starts, though, it’s not all smooth sailing. Whether it’s a vase falling down the stairs to the pit—producing a bellowing bang during a moment of silence—or the exhaustion of performing the second show in one day (I don’t recommend buying tickets to this one if at all possible), there are always a few challenging moments over the course of the show’s run. But at the end of the day it’s embracing these challenges that proves to be the most fun part of pit. Every show is just a little bit different and a little more fun than the last, and by the end we are all sad when that last show comes to a close.”

-Nick Falcone, senior

Be sure to catch Ridge’s production of Something Rotten, with performances Feb 29-Mar 2!


Write A Comment