Podcast Episode 181 — Production Manager of 100+ Productions, Hillary Blanken

Ever wonder how Spiderman landed on your seat in the balcony?  Or how the heck they got that King Kong puppet to run across the stage?  Or where we got the sand for Once On This Island?

Hillary Blanken, the founder of Juniper Street Productions, knows all of those answers and more.

Broadway is filled with spectacle, and shows are constantly pushing the envelope, trying to put things on the stage that audiences have never seen before (that’s one of my producing missions, actually).

Who do Directors and Producers turn to when they want illusions and animals and helicopters?  Production Managers.

That’s why I had Hillary on this week’s podcast, to help explain what she does and how she does it, as well as . . .

  • The secret to being a great production manager isn’t knowing how to do it all, it’s this . . .
  • Why sets are so expensive and what we can do about it?
  • How she works with designers to help realize their vision and keep the show in budget.
  • What the best directors do during the preview process to help make it go smoooooooth.
  • Being a woman, in a backstage world dominated by men . . . so much so, that when you need more labor, someone usually says, “We need another man.”

Click here for my podcast with Hillary.

Listen to it on iTunes here. (And if you like the podcast, give it a great review while you’re there!)

Download it here.

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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.

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