Thern Brings Experience & Expertise to the Theater Team with a new Business Development Manager
Thern Stage Equipment has the highest standards for all lifting and rigging solutions for the theater and entertainment market. All aspects of Thern Stage Equipment function at a premium level, including the staff. Paul Brunner is Thern’s Business Development Manager for Stage Equipment. He enjoys working at Thern because of the great people, great products and great vision the company has. Thern Stage Equipment provides innovation and solutions for a variety of venues. Paul is always excited to use this gear to help with any problem that needs to be solved. He finds joy in discovering and implementing one of the many solutions Thern has to offer. Read the Question and Answer below to learn more about the creativity and passion Paul puts in his work every day!
Q: How did you first get into theater?
A: I was standing on stage during my 7th-grade choir concert, and I watched someone pull a rope to open and close the main curtain. I wondered “how do they do that?” Then I watched the lights fade up and down (ignoring the conductor) and I was hooked. Weeks later I began learning basic stage electrics and audio. I continued in college by learning sound design and stage carpentry, and I just never stopped. I loved the work, solving problems for others, and the people. The people in theatre share a creative passion and I love being part of that.
Q: What excites you most about Theatre equipment?
A: Theatre equipment and well-designed rigging work in marriage with the building to support a wide range of events and activities. I think rigging is the unsung hero of most stages by lifting lighting, curtains, scenery, speakers, and a myriad of other items above the stage. No two theatres are exactly the same, each project is different and presents unique challenges. I’ve always been excited by supporting live entertainment events, but wish to remain behind the scenes never wanting a spotlight. I’m driven by supporting the work of others, and that’s exactly what stage equipment does!
Q: Tell us about your previous experience with Stage Equipment?
A: I’ve been a Technical Director and manager since 1998 with over 165 shows, and budgets from $250 to many hundreds of thousands of dollars. I’ve worked in academic theatre, professional theatres, summer stock, and I’ve produced theatre, musicals, dance, opera, and ballet (and everything in-between). I’ve seen a lot and done a lot, rigging and stage equipment has always been involved.
Q: What are some of your most noteworthy projects?
A: From flown scenery to motorized turntables, and hydraulic stage lifts and large opera wagons. I once rigged about 20 plastic Slinky’s in a small theatre for a children’s show, and years later I moved a 3000lbs horse statue across a stage for the climactic end of an opera, then lowered it and 5 performers below the stage on a hydraulic stage lift. In short, I’ve used a lot of rigging and cared for many theatres.
Q: Why did you decide to work for Thern Stage Equipment?
A: I have first-hand knowledge of how rigging systems are used in all sorts of modern and historic venues. I know the needs of our customers, and I can interpret their ideas to our amazing design and engineering team. I’m not a business person who stumbled into theatre, I’m a theatre person constantly looking for new ways to help others make great productions with amazing new facilities and renovations.
No matter the project, Thern Stage supply’s top-quality equipment to consumers. They are able to work with clients to understand the requirements of the project at hand and provide solutions so the venue can operate at its best. Paul enjoys working for a reliable, powerful and smart company that puts the customers’ needs first. With Paul’s love of solving problems mixed with his love of the theater, coming into work every day is something to look forward to. Whatever the challenge may be, Paul will find a way to make the show go on!