Confessions of a Madonna Stagehand


Last week, the Super Bowl Stage Crew hosted an orientation for those who signed up to volunteer for the Halftime Show, which involves assembling and tearing down Madonna’s stage in about eight minutes. Run by Cap Spence, the staging supervisor for the Halftime Show for the past 11 years, the meeting served as a reality check for some volunteers who expected some nice perks. Here’s the real deal:

+ Stage Crew volunteers will not see one smidgen of the game.None of it?!” one man asked. When Spence shook his head and crushed the man’s dreams, the deserter jumped up from his chair, marched back up the aisle, and busted out the door.

+ We won’t be Vogueing on the field. Our reward for free labor will be “soggy pizza” while watching the tape of the Halftime Show on TV, just like everyone else in America, except not even live.

+ We probably won’t see much of Madonna. When Spence mentioned that Madonna wants us to set up the stage so she can rehearse an extra day before the game (reportedly, she has already been rehearsing daily since the beginning of December), one volunteer yelled out, “Did you just say there’s a possibility that we’ll be in the same room as Madonna?!” Spence quickly replied, “Yeah—it’s called Lucas Oil Stadium.”

+ Who cares? We’re Madonna’s stagehands! For all the celebrity sightings and game glimpses we haven’t been promised as volunteers at the Super Bowl, there must be something that makes the experience unforgettable—in fact, 30 of this year’s volunteers have been part of the stage crew before, and most of them will be travelling in from across the country for two weeks just for the honor of carting around hundreds of pounds of staging. Whether it’s the camaraderie of being part of a team, taking the field just minutes after Aaron Rodgers or Tim Tebow runs off it, or the pride of being part of Indy’s national debut as a host city, there must be more to this thing than grunt work. Isn’t there?

    Stay tuned for more Confessions of a Madonna Stagehand to find out!