Who You Gonna Call? Fill The Steins!

The 30th Anniversary of the first Ghostbusters flick is this year, and though some of you youngsters out there might not remember the heyday of America’s favorite paranormal quartet, everybody loves a good ghost story, right?  We live to serve.  Where UMaine-themed-blogging meets arts & culture meets campfire lore, that’s where you find Fill The Steins.  So get your s’more gear ready and gather around for a tale of…

OK, so it isn’t as much tale (singular) as tales (plural), since there’s not one consensus about who the ghost actually is.  Is it the spirit of a deeply depressed director?  Is it the spectre of UMaine’s Depression-and Post-War-Era President, Arthur Hauck, himself?  Or is the most popular of the legends: a student who took her own life in the upstairs level of the Theatre, and now haunts the stage forever?
For generations of actors, techies, and directors, there has been a growing legend, built on stories passed on from class to class, of…somethingghostly hanging out in Hauck.  The stories even led to a 2003 investigation by real-life “paranormal specialists.”  (Though their findings indicated nothing in Hauck Auditorium, it should be noted that the team didn’t make past the lobby.)
Tales include seeing the vague, shadowy outline of a young woman throughout the Auditorium, strange noise and voices, feelings of severe sadness and loneliness from out of nowhere, and distinct senses of not being alone.  Some people tell stories of hearing music when alone in Hauck, but given the attachment to the Class of 1944 back in the 1990s, music rehearsals and students are virtually everywhere throughout the building – so let’s take that one with a large grain of salt.
Your humble correspondent spent many, many late nights in Hauck as a stage manager for a handful of productions; as much as I’m a skeptic about these kinds of things, there’s no denying the creepy vibe I got when climbing up to the lighting deck, all alone in the large space.  Strange breaths of cold wind on an otherwise hot day…  Things moving out of the corner of your eye…  Lights on in places you could’ve sworn they weren’t before…  And, as friend of the blog, Andrew Hicks reminded me, the stage freight elevator opening up randomly, for no reason.  Nothing specific, and all very explainable, obviously.  But when you’ve heard all these ghost stories before?  It’s enough to make you think twice – especially when you poke your head around a corner on the props deck to see a model Egyptian sarcophagus staring you in the face.
So, maybe there’s something, maybe there isn’t – certainly, many people who have spent a lot of time in the Theatre have similar stories.  Short of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd walking through that door, I don’t think there will ever be a definitive answer.  But it’s fun to speculate, right?  How about you?  Any Hauck ghost tales?  Any UMaine spooky stories?  Hit us up in the comments, on Twitter (@FillTheSteins, @matteegee), or via email (mgrondin@fillthesteins.com)!
Boo!  I mean… Cheers!

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About "Fill The Steins": A multimedia platform devoted to providing an informative, entertaining forum that celebrates "the college of our hearts always" and its graduates' contributions to academics, athletics, and popular culture, as created by alumni and students, for alumni and students. FTS is not affiliated with the University of Maine or UMaine System and does not represent the views or opinions of the university in any way, shape, or form.
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