Winter 2018

Maureen Smith

Smith Contributes to a "Well-Oiled Machine"


Associate director Maureen Smith gets to witness all sorts of fun from the control room during tapings of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. But her favorite moments? "Big events like traveling," she says. "We do it maybe once a year [and Fallon] takes all of his departments, pretty much everybody with him."

As much as Smith loves traveling with the show, it presents its own unique set of challenges. "Dealing with a different setup and additional crew is difficult," she explains, remembering the week of the 2015 Super Bowl, which involved flying to Los Angeles and then Phoenix for a live show following the game. "There was only a day and a half to prep the live show because we couldn't get into the theater, and we had to be back at the airport at 3 a.m."

Smith refers to the Tonight Show crew as a "well-oiled machine," which is key whenever things need to be changed between rehearsal and taping. Finding out, for instance, that a band will be doing an unexpected second song requires her to rush prep to film the new song, but it's no sweat for Smith. "We have it down to a science."

(Photo: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC)

At Work With

Short profiles of Guild members in all categories sharing their experiences at work.

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