Alexandra Fischbein, a 2009 New Britain High School graduate, is well on her way to a successful career in theatre, after her recent graduation from Plymouth State University. Fischbein earned a Bachelor’s degree in theatre, with concentrations in stage management and arts administration. Fischbein graduated Summa Cum Laude as a member of the Phi Kappa Phi and Pi Gamma Mu honors societies, is one of New Britain’s many success stories.
Fischbein said her experience at New Britain High School was very positive, and she remembers it fondly. She was a drill sergeant in marching band, and acted as the director’s assistant for the musicals during her sophomore, junior and senior years.
“My appreciation for music was what steered me towards theatre,” Fischbein said. “While I knew that I did not want to perform, I still wanted to be involved in some way.”
Fischbein said Brian Germain, who acts as music director for the musicals at the high school, was influential in her life, as he taught her what a stage manager does in theatre.
“Without his guidance, I would not be where I am today, simply because I would not know how expansive the wild world of theatre really is,” she said.
Fischbein also said the now retired Mr. Lunn, who ran the marching band at NBHS, was a positive influence on her life. She also participated in concert band, dance band, stage crew and Amnesty International while at the high school.
Fischbein attributes several things at New Britain High School to her college success, including the availability of many AP classes and the diversity of the student population.
“From a work standpoint, NBHS prepared me completely for what to expect in a college setting, from the work load to classroom expectations,” Fischbein said.
In college, Fischbein spent much of her time in the theatre department. She stage-managed one big musical every semester, and was also employed by the school as a carpenter in the scene shop, building and painting all of the sets for the department’s shows.
“This job also allowed me to stage-manage outside gigs that came in and performed in our space, including acts such as comedian Larry Miller and humorist David Sedaris,” she said.
During her senior year, she also wrote all of the press releases for the Music, Theatre and Dance Department shows.
This summer, Fischbein is working at the Arundel Barn Playhouse in Arundel, Maine, as their marketing director. Fischbein said she is learning a great deal about what goes into running a theatre. In addition to coming up with creative ideas to get patrons in the seats, she also acts as the producer’s representative during shows, helps accommodate patrons, run concessions, helps give the curtain speech, and generally makes sure the show runs smoothly for the audience.
Fischbein said she has an interest in the administrative side of theatre. Her long-term goal is to run her own theatre.
Fischbein said it is important to be proud of where you come from.
“Everyone has their own story to tell, and New Britain is an amazing setting for your story to begin,” she said. “I have so much pride in my hometown and would not change a single thing about how it cultivated me into the person that I am today. Be sure to take the time to reflect on all that New Britain has to offer you, as you embark on the next stage in your life’s journey.”