Arts and culture is a significant contributor to the Town of Parker’s hometown feel. We are fortunate to be able to place emphasis on our unique cultural heritage through the efforts of Parker Arts, which helps provide access to these types of opportunities for our residents.
Meet Roderick Borden, Stage Technician for Parker Arts, who helps performances come to life at venues including the PACE Center, Schoolhouse and Discovery Park. Thanks to the efforts of Roderick and Parker Arts’ talented staff of stagehands, our residents and visitors are able to see exceptional performances right here in our community. Please take a few minutes to learn more about Roderick!
How long have you worked for the Town of Parker?
“I started working for Parker Arts in November 2015.”
Where did you work before Parker?
“I worked as a freelance stagehand for The Lighting Syndicate in New York City setting up technical equipment for Off-Broadway Shows, as well as for Frost Productions, an events production company that provides large-scale technical assistants for corporate events, parties, weddings and galas.”
Tell us about your job and how it impacts the Parker community.
“I am our productions staff’s full-time Stage Technician. I primarily lead a crew of stagehands in navigating the logistics of the many touring acts, events and our produced shows that happen on our Mainstage Theatre, The Schoolhouse Theatre and Discovery Park stages. I also lead our stagehands in the construction and implementation of the three musicals and two plays that we produce at the PACE Center and The Schoolhouse Theatre.”
What do you most enjoy about working for the Town of Parker?
“The vast amount of communication and accessibility I have with all forms of Town-affiliated departments. From our Cultural Department, to Parks, to the Police Department, I have the ability to reach out to all of those areas and ask for help or even just a frame of reference.”
What is one thing that most people don’t know about you?
“I’m a huge fan of musical theatre. I used to be a working actor in NYC and fell into working as a technician for a bit more job security. I have a lot of passion for it because at its root, it’s a group of people who have very specific skillsets that work together to create one piece of art.”
What is your favorite thing to do in your free time?
“First and foremost, hanging out with my awesome three-year-old son, Thomas. Anyone who frequents the PACE Center knows who he is. He’s just a lovable, animated kid.
“I’m also a big fan of movies and room escape venues. So sitting in a movie theatre with some popcorn and Milk Duds or trying to get out of a room in 60 minutes or less is my kind of night.”
What’s one thing that you feel sets Parker apart from other communities?
“I’ve lived in small towns and big cities before, and Parker is one of those places that really tries hard to mix the two. They’ve got all the amenities of a larger city with a booming community, but also strive to encompass a small-town feel.”
What is the most interesting place you’ve ever visited?
“I would probably have to say Half Moon Cay in The Bahamas. I used to work for Carnival Cruise Lines, and one of our stops was Half Moon Cay. The area where we would anchor had nearly nothing on it. We had to tender in on small boats and set up all of our amenities for our guests on the island. Food, bars, entertainment, excursions, you name it—it most like got delivered on a little boat. But the view was gorgeous and you felt completely secluded from everything else in the world. It was beautiful.”
What’s one thing you couldn’t live without?
“If we’re talking about material possessions, I would have to say Netflix/Hulu accounts. Entertainment is how I check out. It’s funny saying that, because entertainment is what I do for a living. But the thing that relaxes me the most is being able to forget about work or social media and invest in a movie for a couple hours. Very therapeutic.”
If you could do another job for the Town of Parker for just one day, what would it be?
“I would most likely gravitate towards the Parks and Recreation Department. I get a lot of gratification out of manual labor, and to know that it’s all to make the Town look and feel more pristine than it did the day before sounds really appealing to me.”
What’s one thing about working for the Town of Parker that you didn’t expect?
“A Town-run theatre. Every venue I’ve ever worked in since the age of 17 has been privately owned and comes with a lot of artistic freedom because of that. Working for a municipality proves to have many hurdles when it comes to presenting a wide variety of shows. We have to be very particular when it comes to our seasons. We toe the line frequently trying to accommodate what our audiences are asking for while also trying to expose our audiences to new and exciting shows or acts.”
What accomplishment are you most proud of since you started working for the Town of Parker?
“The accomplishments I am most proud of are things where our crew exceeds expectations. Kind of those ‘Proud Dad’ moments. The first would be the opening of Discovery Park and all the great programming that came from it. The other would be the success of our theatrical productions the past couple of years. In both instances, our stagehands really put a personal touch on each of those products and made them really, really special.”
What is the strangest thing that you have experienced while working for the Town of Parker?
“I’ve come from living in both California and New York City, so my threshold for ‘strange’ is a bit high. But I guess the strangest thing would have to be ‘shooing’ the occasional snake out of the building during the summer seasons.”