I volunteer at a local theatre. It is an all volunteer playhouse. That means all of the actors, directors, producers, ushers, and choreographers are there, working very hard, for free. The money raised by ticket sales pay for the productions themselves, as well as the upkeep and maintenance of the theatre building. That upkeep includes the HVAC system. The main auditorium seats about 250 people. The small “black box” theatre holds about 150 people. So at any given performance, the 400 patrons plus the 100 to 200 people responsible for each show, means that there are 500 to 600 people in the building who need to be heated up or cooled off, depending on the weather outside. One night, during intermission, I was backstage – preparing for my second act entrance – and I heard the air conditioning shut off. At first I thought it was just cycling through, but after about 2 minutes on stage, under those hot stage lights and inside a heavy period-specific costume, I realized the HVAC was not working properly, if at all. As I began to sweat, I noticed people in the audience fanning themselves with their programs. It was easily 80 degrees outside and the theatre was quickly approaching a matching temperature. We muscled through the second act, trying to ignore our comfort and exceedingly uncomfortable audience members. Some people in the seats were removing layers of clothing as the auditorium grew warmer and warmer. Like they say, “the show must go on!” As soon as the curtain closed, the director walked out onto the stage to thank the patrons for their patience and understanding. Meanwhile, the house manager was opening the doors and the producer was calling an HVAC repair service. After all, we had three more weeks of show and could not possibly make it without a working air conditioning system.