This is Trish’s eighth season volunteering with Cal Shakes. She serves as an usher, passes out programs, sells raffle tickets, and helps out in our office. She first started enjoying Cal Shakes’ productions in John Hinkel Park.
Read on to learn more about Trish and her family and recent travels.
Where are you from, and why do you love Cal Shakes? I’m originally from a small town in Connecticut. During my college years I lived in Massachusetts before moving to Berkeley in 1980. There is no place like the Bay Area; I’m having too much fun with family, friends, and projects while also volunteering for great venues like Cal Shakes.
Cal Shakes brings such a wide variety of top notch plays to our community. Their productions transport me to another world where I enjoy the delights of the brilliant actors, imaginative stage sets, and exotic costumes. Cal Shakes richly satisfies and rewards its audience with the pleasures of the stage.
One very memorable evening I was selling raffle tickets with my friend Ed who holds a degree in theater arts. We were able to sell the most tickets that I have ever sold. I explained the great programs that Cal Shakes offers to school-age children and he talked about how the theater experience fosters learning in and beyond the arts. I think we sold over $350 in tickets that night.
Ah, but another great experience was driving the golf cart from the ticket booth to the theater, bringing those that can’t walk the path to the theater area. It was in early October and it was the night of one of the presidential debates. Talk about conversations! Then, at the last minute I was asked to be ready to pick up one of the actors who was running late. We had a most animated and hysterical conversation about politicians and Shakespeare’s take on politics. Now that was a memorable experience!
Most often I volunteer for handing out playbills because I enjoy talking to people and helping them have an enjoyable experience at the play. I also sell raffle tickets, usher, and do whatever is needed to prepare for the performance. I worked at a student matinee and saw children really get excited about understanding the play. What really was great was to see a student “get” how incredible Shakespeare’s work is and hear them talk about how it relates to our present day.
If you could be a character in any play you’ve seen at Cal Shakes, who would it be and in which production? I think I’d like to be your Titania, Queen of the Fairies, from A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Cal Shakes adorned her in flowing, colorful, fanciful costumes that were mesmerizing.
What’s one the most exciting things you’ve done this year? This year has been incredible. In April I traveled with my daughter around Jordan, Sri Lanka, and United Arab Emirates. I retired a month ago from a fulfilling 30+ year career. So, now that I have time, I am volunteering through AARP’s Experience Corps where I’ll take part in a literacy program to help Oakland kindergarten through 3rd-graders build reading skills.
Trish, thank you for being an important part of our Cal Shakes family!
Volunteers are a vital part of our Cal Shakes community. With over 1,000 volunteers, our volunteer corps represents a wide and diverse demographic. Our volunteers hail from throughout the Bay Area, San Francisco to Pleasant Hill, to across the state, from Grass Valley to Los Angeles. They are mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, coworkers and friends. Volunteering with California Shakespeare Theater can be a great opportunity to experience and learn new things, spend time with family and friends, earn high school credit, fulfill community service requirements, see great theater for free, and, most importantly, pay it forward in the spirit of volunteerism. There are many ways to lend a hand at Cal Shakes, and signing up is easy.
Interested in volunteering? Click here to register; once your application has been approved, you will be able to sign up for ushering dates and will be notified of other opportunities.