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InCord’s Safety Netting Supports Industry Workers

InCord’s Safety Netting Supports Industry Workers

InCord made their 2022 donation to Behind the Scenes on the show floor at USITT reflecting a percentage of profits from sales of their Theatrical Safety Netting Systems. The systems (https://incord.com/theatre-division/) are hand-crafted in the USA by skilled artisans, safety tested to exceed all applicable industry standards, and are custom designed by professional engineers to perfectly fit your orchestra pit and/or protect your stage and house operations according to your technical and aesthetic requirements.

Joe Menhart, InCord’s Theatre Division Sales Manager, commented, “We are delighted to provide this needed support to BTS especially when so many more are still in need due to the ongoing global pandemic that is now stretching over two years. Our hearts go out to all those who benefit from the grants and resources provided by BTS.”

Todd Spencer accepted the check along with other members of the Behind the Scenes Board of Directors. Todd commented, “We are so appreciative of InCord’s donation. Their concern for the safety of industry workers is built in to their product and their commitment to Behind the Scenes. Our Pledge-of-Support Program is the perfect vehicle for InCord and their customers to demonstrate that concern.”

For more information about joining the Pledge-of-Support Program by naming a product or service to support the charity, please visit https://wp.behindthescenescharity.org/pledge-of-support-program/ or email [email protected].

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ETC’s iRFR and aRFR Apps – Continuing to Care for the Industry

ETC’s iRFR and aRFR Apps – Continuing to Care for the Industry

ETC presented Behind the Scenes with a check during USITT for $40,316.27
representing the 2020-21 proceeds from sales of the company’s iRFR and aRFR (Radio Focus Remote) applications. Since the launch of the iRFR in 2009, ETC’s mobile app sales have now generated over $440,000 in donations.

The iRFR and aRFR mobile apps enable convenient, touchscreen-based remote control for Eos family consoles and controllers. You can learn more about the apps from the ETC website and download them from the iTunes or Google Play stores. 

Upon presenting the check, David Lincecum, Vice President of Marketing for ETC, stated, “ETC is honored to play a role in Behind the Scenes, but we are just the vehicle. The money we give comes entirely from the buyers of our iRFR and aRFR apps. The real thank you goes to the many Eos family users for their continued participation and support.”

Tracey Cosgrove, accepted the check along with other members of the Behind the Scenes Board of Directors. Tracey commented, “We continue to be astonished by, and extremely grateful for, the popularity of these apps and the generosity of ETC. From providing funding for grants for our colleagues in need to supporting the work of the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative, ETC has been fundamental to our ability to carry out our mission.”

Learn more about joining the Pledge-of-Support Program by naming a product or service to support the charity.

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Toolbox Talks One-Sheets

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The Behind the Scenes Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative announces a key addition to its Toolbox Talks program: One-Sheets on a range of topics designed to delve deeper into common issues currently impacting entertainment industry workers as they navigate fluctuating work situations and frequently changing Covid protocols.

As the industry continues to transition and re-open, industry leadership and supervisors are observing significant anxiety in the workplace and are requesting tools to help their crews better navigate and manage the return to work. One-Sheetsbriefly describe general mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression and substance use, and offer basic information and resources around these prevalent issues within the industry. 

We must continue raising awareness and normalizing the conversation around mental health and emotional wellness in the workplace and these flyers are designed to be posted in break rooms or be handed out with schedules or during toolbox talks. The  goal is to convey the message that psychological safety is as important as physical safety.

The Toolbox Talks program was created to assist with language around mental health and wellness in order to facilitate respect in the workplace. Sample language is provided to incorporate mental health into daily safety briefings, and Toolbox Talks can be tailored to fit specific individual and group needs. 

The Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative, and programs such as Toolbox Talks and One-Sheets, are committed to creating and sustaining psychologically safe workplaces for the entertainment industry. 

Behind the Scenes has collaborated with other concerned organizations and individuals to create the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative. A series of tools and resources has been developed to not only help you but also assist you in helping your colleagues, friends and family. Find links to additional tools and resources and information about the initiative at btshelp.org/mentalhealth.

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Stop Bullying, Harassment and Intimidation

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Last year the Behind the Scenes Mental Health Initiative conducted a survey that revealed that bullying, harassment and intimidation are a common experience in our industry. Respondents told us, “Emotional abuse is part of the culture,” and “Harassment, discrimination, and retaliation are rampant.”

The Mental Health Steering Committee has launched a campaign (btshelp.org/stopbullying) to help workers and employers alike understand the signs and consequences of this behavior. Our aim is to raise awareness and encourage all who experience or witness bullying, harassment or intimidation to speak up.

The resources provided include a set of posters to raise awareness of words, actions and behaviors that constitute bullying, harassment or intimidation; information to empower individuals to Be Informed, Be Aware, Show Support, and Take Action; and a sample policy and procedures to identify, investigate and resolve instances of bullying, harassment or intimidation and to provide support to those who experience these behaviors.

One survey respondent wrote, “My workplaces are decades behind in helping people with emotional wellness. That starts with the  aggressive behavior, belittling behavior, yelling, throwing objects, etc. that I see on the jobsite constantly. Most folks feel that they have to just have a tough skin and take the abusive behavior in stride. That’s a perfect breeding place for all kinds of mental and emotional illness.”

Together we can help curb this behavior in the workplace. We can improve both psychological and physical safety and encourage a more respectful and supportive workplace. 

Behind the Scenes has collaborated with other concerned organizations and individuals to create the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative. A series of tools and resources has been developed to not only help you but also assist you in helping your colleagues, friends and family. Find links to additional tools and resources and information about the initiative at btshelp.org/mentalhealth.

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Celebrate the Seasons with BTS

Celebrate the Seasons with Behind the Scenes

Decorate Your Home for the Holidays and Help Your Colleagues in Need

From Halloween through Christmas and Hannukah, add some unique holiday decorations to your home this year and support your colleagues who are seriously ill or injured as well as the BTS Mental Health and Suicide Prevention initiative. These ornaments have been generously made and donated to Behind the Scenes by Mike and Sue Wood, so every penny goes directly to helping your colleagues in need.

Individual acrylic inserts are now available for the portable mini LED ghostlight so you can celebrate the holidays in style. Choose from the iconic ghostlight, the pumpkin ghostlight for Halloween, the autumnal Cornucopia ghostlight for Thanksgiving, the Hanukkah menorah ghostlight, or the Christmas tree ghostlight. Purchase your first unit with the base and remote control and then stock up on inserts so you can complement the season. It couldn’t be easier to change out the acrylic inserts.

We also have an array of ghostlight and industry-themed ornaments to decorate your tree. Have cutouts of your favorite tools hanging on your tree by choosing from a crescent wrench, shackle, paintbrush or scissors as well as holiday designs. Available in 3” round acrylic disks in red or clear. There’s also a BTS ghostlight and a garlanded Christmas tree with a ghostlight star etched on clear acrylic.

LED night lights are available in multi color or solid blue with your choice of a ghostlight, Christmas tree with ghostlight star, or Star of David.

The holidays are just around the corner so don’t delay and add some holiday cheer to your home today! And while you’re there, check out the BTS Holiday Cards, created by industry designers specially for the charity, available in card packs of 10 and as e-cards.

Click here to order your holiday decorations now!

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Spread Cheer with BTS Holiday Cards

Spread Cheer and Help with BTS Holiday Cards

The 2021 Behind the Scenes Holiday Cards are on sale now at the BTS Boutique. It’s important to let family, friends and colleagues know you are thinking of them and these unique holiday cards say it perfectly. They are also a personal and inexpensive way for a company to keep in touch with its customers and let them know “We are here and you are important to us.”

Sending a BTS holiday card helps spread the word about the charity and lets your recipients know you are supporting industry colleagues who are ill or injured as well as the BTS Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative.

Cards are available in a variety of options: card packs of 10 with a standard greeting, personalized cards with a company logo and custom message, and electronic cards in multiple file formats and an array of price points starting at just $20.

This year’s cards feature an eclectic mix of new designs by Elektra Buhalis, Maureen Freedman, Ola Krazspulska, Robert Mendoza and India Smith. We’re also bringing back one of our all-time favorite designs by Melissa Pfeiffer.

Orders for printed cards will be taken until September 30, 2021 to arrive by late November. Electronic card orders will be taken until December 17th. View and order cards at www.behindthescenescharity.org/holidaycards.

Click here to order your cards

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NATEAC Supports Behind the Scenes

NATEAC Support Behind the Scenes

Behind the Scenes announces that NATEAC, the North American Theatre Engineering and Architecture Conference, has made a $10,000 donation to support the work of the charity. NATEAC is a quadrennial conference which had been scheduled to take place in New York City last summer and was turned into a highly successful virtual conference held July 20-22, 2021.

On presenting the check, NATEAC Founder, Bill Sapsis, commented, “All of us at NATEAC are very happy to provide this donation in support of the terrific work the Behind the Scenes Foundation offers through its grants program and mental health initiative.” In 2016 NATEAC donated the proceeds from its conference dinner at Sardi’s to the charity.  In 2021 the pandemic forced NATEAC to cancel the dinner but the conference organizers were determined to continue the support for BTS.

NATEAC’s mission is to promote communication between the architects, engineers, consultants, and manufacturers responsible for designing and building new theaters and renovating existing facilities in North America. It is also their goal to promote a higher level of interaction between these professionals and the end users of their facilities.

Lori Rubinstein, Executive Director of the Behind the Scenes Foundation, gratefully accepted the check, saying “NATEC represents a coming together of individuals from across our industry to share their expertise to create even better performance spaces that benefit those who work in and attend them. That ethos is kin to what Behind the Scenes represents–a coming together of individuals to share their expertise to care for their colleagues who are ill or injured or coping with mental health challenges. NATEAC’s donation is a welcome affirmation of that work at a much-needed time.”

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Long Reach Long Riders Complete 18th Ride

The 2021 Long Reach Long Riders Complete Their 18th Ride

Donations Still Being Accepted

The Long Reach Long Riders (LRLR) are very happy to announce the successful completion of their 18th annual charity motorcycle ride, A River Runs Through It.  The annual ride, which benefits the Behind the Scenes charity and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, began in Woodbury, MN, on June 20th and returned to Woodbury on June 26th.  The group, which consisted of 30 people, 21 bikes and 2 chase cars, has raised over $50,500.00 to date, bringing the total raised by the LRLR since the rides began in 2004, to more than $800,000.00

The ride this year included visits to the headwaters of the Mississippi River at Lake Itasca, the National Bald Eagle Center in Wabasha and the Paul Bunyan & Babe the Blue Ox statues in Bemidji. “It’s very gratifying,” noted Ride Marshals Paul & Peggy Sannerud, “to see all the work that gets put into one of these rides reflected in the happy smiles of the riders as we travel the route.”  Greg Williams, one of the founding members of the LRLR, commented, “We had a terrific time despite having more rain than on any other ride.” 

The route, which covered over 1,700 miles, took the riders along a number of rivers and through the Driftless Region on Minnesota.  Here are a few of the things the riders experienced during this year’s ride

  • Crossed over 96 rivers, large and small.
  • Crossed the Mississippi River 18 times.
  • Endured over 3.5 inches of rain.
  • Enjoyed 17 different varieties of Cheese Curds

The Long Reach Long Riders would like to thank everyone who helped make this year’s ride a success. Donations will be accepted until August 1.  Please visit http://lrlr.org/ for more information.

The 19th annual Long Reach Long Rider charity motorcycle ride will take place in the southeast section of the country in 2022.   Dates have not yet been set.  Please check the website, http://lrlr.org/ in the coming months for updates on route, registration and donation information.

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Toolbox Talks

The Behind the Scenes Mental Health Initiative wants language about mental health and respectful workplaces to become a part of every toolbox talk or safety briefing because psychological safety is as important as physical safety.

It’s not always an easy subject to talk about though, so to make it easier for those delivering these talks we are suggesting topics and providing sample language that can be used as is or tailored to fit individual needs. Find out more at btshelp.org/toolboxtalks.

It is important to acknowledge the mental and physical stressors and challenges faced by all of us in the entertainment industry and offer your team tools to help them better manage and respond to these challenges. We know that the last months in particular have been very stressful and returning to work is bringing a new set of concerns for everyone. Many people are struggling with anxiety, grief, feeling overwhelmed, inability to concentrate, changes in appetite or sleep, changes in drinking or substance use patterns, or others issues affecting daily functioning.

In addition to the sample language provided under each topic, we also offer a selection of brief pre-scripted talks. This information is meant to be incorporated into existing safety or toolbox talks and is not meant to replace other safety briefings.

For those needing to gain management approval to incorporate language about mental health into their talks, we offer some key reasons why it is important to talk about mental health and psychological safety in the workplace.

Behind the Scenes has collaborated with other concerned organizations and individuals to create the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Initiative. A series of tools and resources has been developed to not only help you but also assist you in helping your colleagues, friends and family. Find links to additional tools and resources and information about the initiative at btshelp.org/mentalhealth.

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Cable Munkey Becomes BTS Pledge-a-Product Partner

Cable Munkey Becomes Pledge-a-Product Partner

Behind the Scenes is very pleased to announce that Cable Munkey LLC has become a Pledge-a-Product partner by pledging a percentage of sales from its Cable Munkey® cable management product. Cable Munkey® easily slips onto battens or truss giving the user a quick and easy way to attach cable. Data and power cables each run in their own separate hook for easy access, troubleshooting, and reduced electrical interference. With integrated mousing points, cable can be secured for temporary use, permanent installations, or tours.  Place a Cable Munkey™ every four feet and you’re ready to go.

Cable Munkey LLC is a small business founded to bring innovative products and solutions to the theatre and live event market, like Cable Munkey®. Founder Jonathan  Allender-Zivic says he decided to support Behind the Scenes with his product because “I am a lifelong theatre artist and practitioner who wants to give back to those in need within our industry.”

BTS Foundation Chair Rick Rudolph commented, “We’re delighted to welcome Jonathan and his unique product as Pledge-a-Product Partners. He’s a wonderful example that you don’t have to be a large company to want to give back and support your industry. Every commitment makes a difference in what we are able to do to help our colleagues in need.”

For more information about joining the Pledge-of-Support Program by naming a product or service to support the charity, please visit https://wp.behindthescenescharity.org/pledge-of-support-program/ or email [email protected].