Kimber Eike seeks to tell stories from behind the scenes

Kimber leans against a mural with masks of comedy and tragedy outside the Moffat County High School auditorium. Eike is a homeschool student who filled many crew roles in the MCHS theater program the past four years and will attend Arkansas’ Harding University this fall to study film.
Andy Bockelman/Craig Press

Whether at the amateur or professional level, a production of theater, television or film can be made or broken by the people who do the thankless tasks — wrangling actors wherever they need to be, adjusting lighting, ensuring costumes and props look just right.

Kimber Eike has been part of these jobs in recent years of Moffat County High School drama shows and plans to keep using those skills as life continues.

Just don’t ask her to be in the spotlight.

Eike plans to major in film this fall as she attends Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas.

Part of her goal for narrowing down a college was to find a place that would be a good fit for her creativity as well as her faith.

“I was looking for a good, private Christian university,” she said. “My original plan was to attend Colorado Christian University, but after I decided to study film, I had to reconsider because CCU unfortunately doesn’t have a film major.”

Her mother suggested Harding because of her summers in Arkansas, and the school was where Eike’s great-aunt matriculated.

Her decision to major in film was due to gaining a greater level of appreciation for TV and movies as she grew older.

“When watching something I would get very interested in how they pulled off one thing or other, and I loved to watch behind-the-scenes videos,” she said. “I also love the emotion that comes with shows and movies, and how you can use them as an escape, and I’d like to be a part of the magic that creates that.”

Eike is a homeschool student but was a regular factor in the MCHS theater program the past four years. Though she had been onstage during dance recitals previously, she vastly preferred staying in the wings as part of the stage crew for her first show, “The Wizard of Oz,” in which her older sister portrayed the Tin Man.

Kimber Eike displays mementos of some of the theatrical shows she’s been part of at Moffat County High School, including “Alice in Wonderland,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Wizard of Oz,” and “Once Upon a Mattress.”
Andy Bockelman/Craig Press

Both of them later had small speaking roles in the spring 2020 play, “Clue,” which wound up being cancelled at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ever since then, Eike has been emphatically offstage, either leading the crew or serving as stage manager.

“I joined stage crew my first show because I wanted to dip my toe into theatre without being thrown onstage first thing, and I ended up loving it even more than acting,” she said. “I really like being a part of a show without necessarily having to be seen, as well as working behind-the-scenes magic. It kinda feels like I’m in on a little secret.”

She added that she enjoyed the perspective of seeing theater teacher Grace Alberico work out the steps of each play or musical she oversaw.

“Sometimes I would throw in a little suggestion here and there, and once I even considered interviewing for assistant director, but I ultimately decided to stick with stage crew,” Eike said. “I’m hoping to be able to direct in college.”

Eike said it was Alberico who made her want to stick with theater. Likewise, Alberico said that Eike and other crewmembers of her shows have been invaluable, largely because they’re unconcerned with being stars.

“In theater, the actors usually get all of the glory. However, the show could not go on without the people working behind the scenes,” Alberico said. “Kimber has been one of my most dedicated and reliable student leaders over the last several years. She takes her job seriously, brings cohesion to the crew, and presents herself with the utmost integrity. I am so proud of all of the work Kimber has done in theatre and I wish her the best as she continues to pursue her passions.”

Eike also hopes to experiment a bit with the form of media she’ll create in college.

“I had made some films with my friends, and I would never be in them, but I would edit them,” she said. “The school has their own news station so I could work on filming them and being behind the scenes with cameras. They go live on real TV, and I think that’s awesome.”

Whether it winds up being Hollywood or Broadway or something in a different medium, Eike said the one drawback of a life in the arts is it will be hard to do without being away from her hometown.

“I love Moffat County and Craig and small towns in general, and I kinda hate the idea of having to live in a city for the career I want,” she said. “I hope someday I can be a part of a production somewhere smaller and more remote.”

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