Jan Davis Scarborough, left, and the pages help straighten out the train of Queen Virginia Grace Scarborough's dress on stage before the curtain goes up on March 31 during the Historic Natchez Tableaux. (Photo by Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)
NATCHEZ — As the curtain goes up and the placard bearers smile to kick off the Historic Natchez Tableaux four nights a week during Spring Pilgrimage, backstage is a different story.In the hallways of City Auditorium, cast members are getting changed into costumes, rehearsing their scene or running to find their friends before taking the stage. It’s busy, but it’s an organized kind of busy.
Pageant committee members are ushering people in the right direction, telling others when to take the stage. Teenage girls help each other with their hair while young boys crowd around their friend’s Nintendo game, ignoring mothers who try to fix collars and make sure shoes are tied.
The tableaux runs like a well-oiled machine. With many helping hands, long hours of planning and dedicated committee members, parents and participants, the show does go on.
Jack Russ, 9, left, and Alex Dale, 10, center left, play video games as Mason Wells, 8, center right, and Parker Murray, 10, right, compete in a thumb war as they wait backstage for the maypole scene of the Historic Natchez Tableaux on March 28. (Photo by Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)
David Carter and his son Coleman practice blowing the hunting horn before the hunt scene of the Historic Natchez Tableaux outside of the City Auditorium. (Photo by Lauren Wood The Natchez Democrat)
Tableaux committee member Chretia Johnson, left, helps little maypole girls walk up the stairs to take the stage for the maypole scene of the Historic Natchez Tableaux on March 30. (Photo by Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)
Catherine McCalip, 16, center, smiles and laughs around as her friend Cena Mullins, 15, right, helps her zip up her dress for the soiree scene of the Historic Natchez Tableaux on March 28 backstage at the City Auditorium. (Photo by Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)
Karly King, 8, puts on her dress over her hoop skirt as she gets ready for the maypole scene backstage at City Auditorium March 28 for the Historic Natchez Tableaux. (Photo by Lauren Wood \ The Natchez Democrat)