“Why we joined the union’

Volume 117, No. 4April, 2017

Wayne Fugate

I joined Local 802 in order to sub on the Broadway musical “Bright Star.” It was a beautiful show with a great musical director and talented band, whose musicianship blew me away every night. Going from zero theatrical experience to playing on a Broadway stage ended up silencing all the inner critics in my head who tried to tell me I couldn’t do it. I was reminded by a friend that everything you want is on the other side of fear. In pushing past my insecurities, I was rewarded with the experience of a lifetime and a reminder of what an incredible gift music has been in my life. It has provided me with the opportunity to travel and experience wonderful people and places that I almost certainly would not have had access to otherwise. I’m looking forward to meeting new folks and extending myself beyond my personal network of colleagues. My principal instrument is the mandolin, and I play other members of the mandolin family too, including the mandola and the octave mandolin. And when pressed, I’ve been known to play a bit of guitar as well. I organized and performed in the first-ever New York International Mandolin Festival, which brought together some of the very best mandolin players from all over the world.