Director's chair with clapper board and megaphone in dark room scene

Director's chair with clapper board and megaphone in dark room scene ()

Volunteering can be such a fulfilling activity. It provides much-needed services in areas as well as providing volunteers an opportunity to give back, meet new people and learn new skills. Volunteering is especially important in the military community because the community is always moving and changing, and volunteer organizations can provide some stability and greatly needed resources. Every other month, we will be highlighting a new organization or event for those who are looking to learn more about the services and resources available to them as well as for those who are looking to give back to the community.

This month we are featuring on-post community theaters. I interviewed Kaitlyn Beck from KMC Onstage, and she shared some insights into what it was like to volunteer with the theater.

Kaitlyn began with the theater in January 2021 but has been a theater kid since attending Aviano High School and double majored in Theater and History in college. She began her tenure with KMC Onstage as the “Dramaturg” for “Medea.” For those outside of theater culture, a Dramaturg is someone who does background research for the show to help those on and off-stage to better understand the context of the show. For example, with “Medea,” Kaitlyn provided the needed knowledge from Greek mythology in an easy-to-watch/read method for the audience to understand where Medea picks up. Since then, Kaitlyn has acted as a wicked stepsister in “Into the Woods,” worked as an educator with the children’s kids program and has most recently taken on the role of choreographer for “Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat.”

When asked about the fulfilling aspects of volunteering with a community theater, one word kept coming up, “community.” Kaitlyn had lived overseas as a military kid, but as a kid she had school and things that got her “plugged into the community.” However, she continues to say that coming over as a military spouse can be “tricky and different” trying to find a connection via a job. Covid didn’t help with making those connections either. By working with KMC Onstage, Kaitlyn has found a community and a way to creatively collaborate with others that no other opportunity gives. Aside from community, she says that the theater provides a “creative outlet for people who maybe want to be creative, but don’t know how, or they don’t have an outlet.” Kaitlyn gets the most fulfillment from working with children’s theater because she can constantly see “how much they are learning through singing, dancing and acting. And, socially, how they engage with each other and grow.”

However, working with a constantly shifting (and let’s be honest, PCS’ing) group of volunteers, can be hard. If acting, singing or dancing isn’t your thing, you can still help with future shows. The theater is always looking for volunteers and no experience is required. Volunteering with KMC Onstage allows you to do what you love, or if you have a skill that you’ve always wanted to learn, such as directing, construction or costuming, they will train you. They just recently had training for house management and the box office. You can learn by doing (and under the guidance of others) in terms of sets, sound operation and costumes as well as acting.

Those interested in volunteering at KMC Onstage can go to their Facebook page,, or, fill out their guild form at Go see their current show, Arcadia, February 3 to 5 and 10 to 12, at 7 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays at 2 p.m. Also, make plans to see their next show, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Mar. 3 to 5 and 10 to 12 at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays at 2 p.m.

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