Sunshine West Coast #2: Still Can’t Believe I Went to the Emmys!

“Crazy but amazing.” That’s how I would summarize my weekend.

My gear for working on set. The staff is required to wear black so that we don’t stand out in the crowd or backstage.

On Friday, September 20 and the following weekend, Done+Dusted held two shows, and as the intern, I had the chance to work on set for both of them and have a peek at how big, live shows are produced. While one is a concert, Hearts of Gold: The 50th Anniversary of the L.A. LGBT Center, the other is the biggest annual event for television, the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards! I’m exhausted after spending almost 40 hours working on set over the course of three days, but this special weekend was definitely a highlight of my time in LA.

A peek at the broadcast truck. Director Hamish Hamilton, the man at the front with long hair, is working on the show’s rehearsal.

As a Production Assistant for both of the shows, I helped with logistics and pre-production, and stood backstage or in the production office when the show was taking place. At the Emmys, honestly, there was a lot of downtime. I imagined that backstage, behind the spotlight, people would be running around, looking nervous and busy. In actuality, the live show of the Emmys is very well-organized. Everything is prepared in advance and every position is backed up by professionals. The closer we got to showtime, the fewer things we need to do and be concerned about.

The Microsoft Theater is ready for the biggest day of television.

Sunday was the show day for the 71st Primetime Emmys Awards. With my credentials, I was able to walk around backstage, as well as in the front. Moreover, I was terribly excited to get the chance to work as a backstage photographer for our company’s social media. During every commercial break, the doors opened and I jumped inside by the front stage to snap some photos. Literally, I jumped with excitement after I captured these amazing moments.

Trophies await their owners backstage.
I wonder what Julia Garner (right) said to make Jodie Comer (left) laugh so hard.
I was thrilled when Anthony Anderson and Alvina Stewart smiled at me!
Sandra Oh from Killing Eve. When the door closed after a commercial break, Oh came to the production office, watched the show from the TV with us, and waited for the next break to reenter the theater.

As many people predicted, Game of Thrones Season 8 won the award for Outstanding Drama Series. Although some fans felt unsatisfied with the ending, GOT said goodbye to its audience with its final season this year. I wasn’t able to finish GOT. I’m incredibly bad at remembering names and faces, so the multiple storylines featured in GOT was overwhelming for me to follow. However, I watched four seasons and I like all the actors in the show. Seeing them in real life and taking pictures of them felt like a dream! 

Before the show starts, stars like Emilia Clarke (left) are chatting and mingling.
The cast of Game of Thrones reunited off-screen.
After Game of Thrones won for Outstanding Drama Series, Sophie Turner, Nathalie Emmanuel, and Emilia Clarke celebrated together.
Liam Cunningham from Game of Thrones holds the trophy. His face says “No one could take it from Game of Throne.”

Recalling the weekend at the Emmys, it still feels like a dream — wonderful and implausible. Thanks to my internship, I got this precious opportunity to have a glance at the fantastic entertainment world. Just like in La La Land, Los Angeles, the center of the entertainment industry, offers opportunities and loneliness, but it is also a place where you can stand on your tiptoes and touch the glamor.

After the show was over, a gentleman took this photo for me. The lucky backstage photographer got a picture of herself at the front!

Ziqi Yang, Study Abroad Correspondent

Ziqi Yang is a junior in the College of Communication at Boston University who is majoring in Film and TV, and Advertising. She is currently studying abroad in Los Angeles and has an internship at Done+Dusted. As a foodie, she loves exploring great foods as well as trying new recipes in her kitchen. Her favorite quote is “Photography is the beauty of life captured”, and through her photos and blogs, she would like to share those beautiful moments with you.

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