Strings Music Festival: The insulated superhighway that is backstage |

Strings Music Festival: The insulated superhighway that is backstage

Ali Mignone/For Steamboat Today

Chris Botti plays at Strings Music Festival at 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Backstage often seems like an insulated world, my own private fiefdom of music stands, orchestra chairs and gaff tape. But when I added up all the people who passed through Strings' tiny backstage during this year's summer season — 90 classical musicians, 25 children's performers, 60 jazz-country-bluegrass-rock artists and 35 touring roadies — it started to feel more like a major highway.

And I have the roadside litter to prove it.

As Strings' summer season draws to a close, I've been tidying up the lonely flotsam left behind by the annual migration of musical types through the pavilion. Here's an abridged list of the extra things we've collected near the backstage tech cabinet over the summer:

• two red plastic Solo cups

• a (decent-sized) piece of ginger root

• a bass drum, a snare drum and two drum stands borrowed from the high school (thank you, Jim Knapp)

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• a drain snake

• a green-striped beach towel

• a plastic baggie full of binder clips

• a navy-blue skinny tie

• two flashlights

• a tiny silver key

• two reels of tangled fishing line

• a Tupperware container of peanut butter

• three bottles of tonic water and two limes (alas, no gin)

• 15 bags of banana candy

• two plastic snakes

• a Frisbee

Why is it that no one leaves useful things backstage? Like a nice Cabernet Sauvignon from Washington's Columbia Valley …

It's the last week of Strings' summer season. A girl can dream, right?

Ali Mignone is the Stage Manager for Strings Music Festival. When she's not telling roadies and musicians what to do, you can find her hiking, biking or skiing around the Yampa Valley.

This week at Strings

• 8 p.m. Wednesday — Chris Botti (jazz)

• 12:15 p.m. Thursday — Missed the Boat (Music on the Green)