In January 2021, Julie Schuetz began her term as President of the QCT Board of Directors. She joined the board in January of 2019 and served as the Vice President in 2020. Though relatively new to the board, Julie has a long-standing history with QCT.
How and when did you first become involved with QCT?
I was in second grade when I did “Alice in Wonderland” at the Quincy Little Theatre at 13th and Payson. It was directed by Deb Brown. I played the cook and got to sprinkle pretend salt and pepper everywhere. I still remember my two lines, “Too much? Too Little! Taste!” and “Tidy up and catch us.” It was so fun.
What are your favorite QCT memories?
In my first adult show, I played Mary in “It’s a Wonderful Life.” I found out I was pregnant with my daughter, my first, shortly before we opened and was a little nervous. I remember on the night I shared my news about being pregnant, Michael Gash, who played George Bailey, said his line to me “Mary, are you on the nest?” and I nodded as Mary and then he hugged me and as the lights went out for that scene, he whispered in my ear that night, “You’re going to be a great mom.” It was a good thing I got to exit during that blackout so I could wipe the tears from my eyes.
In “Enchanted April,” I’ll never forget the audience reaction at the beginning of the Second Act. I’d be off stage ready to walk on, but I learned after the first night to wait a beat because the audience would clap when the curtain came up revealing the Italian villa covered in wisteria that Paul Denckla and crew created. It was a stunningly beautiful set. I loved so much that the audience appreciated the beauty and artistry of that set.
“Big Fish” was such an emotional show. I’ll never forget how supportive and close that cast became as we told the touching father/son story. But, I’ll particularly never forget the dressers. The women backstage who got me through something like 16 costume changes often with less than minutes in between were amazing! That show never would have been the beautiful show that it was without so many unseen heroes in the wings.
“Chicago” has been the wildest ride at QCT (and one I hope we get to share with our community soon!) I’ll never forget the tech rehearsal. Those rehearsals can get pretty long and sometimes get a little tiring as we rehearse all day and start and stop to make technical adjustments throughout. But, it was truly amazing to walk out and be on the set and look at the lights, the costumes, the make-up, the band … We had an inkling that we may not get to put on the show at the end of the week because of the looming pandemic, so maybe that is why it felt so poignant. But, it didn’t matter how many times or how long each time we had to stop to adjust something; it felt magical and I truly didn’t want it to end.
Why did you decide to join the board?
I was honored when asked to join the Board. At QCT, I have met so many amazing people who I now call friends. I have loved meeting volunteers who perform on stage, paint sets, find props, sew costumes, take tickets, participate in classes, help with classes, and wonderful students whose willingness to learn, connect, and express themselves is inspiring. I am in awe of our amazing staff – Sara, Brandon, Brendan, Lorne, Shari, Susan, and Danny and the extremely high quality of entertainment and education QCT offers. My favorite part of the organization is the people – staff, volunteers, and the many loyal and supportive patrons. It’s a long way of saying, I joined the Board in an effort to give back to an organization that has given me, and many others, so much.
What do you look forward to most during your time as president?
I have been so impressed by how everyone has come together and helped QCT through these unprecedented times. The flexibility, creativity, support, sacrifice, and commitment to keeping the organization going speaks volumes to how important QCT is to our community. I look forward to supporting QCT and seeking opportunities to ensure that QCT is an organization that not only continues to provide excellent entertainment and education but also ensures that we engage with everyone in the community in a positive, thoughtful, and constructive way.
What should people know about QCT?
When you enter the Lab Theater at QCT, there is a sign that says “In this room it is impossible to fail; go ahead, try it.” This sign is emblematic of the importance of QCT for our community. In a world that can seem divisive and isolated, QCT is a place of collaboration, creativity, and support. I am humbled by what I see this organization do for this community. When you walk into a room that encourages you to the point of telling you that nothing you can do can be seen as failure, you find a community striving for growth and unconditional acceptance, and that is what I hope everyone can experience at QCT.