Backstage Positions

Because our production policy involves a total theatre concept, we expect each major to work in every area of the theatre and gain as much experience as possible over a four year period. In our view, an actor will be better if (s)he understands what is involved in technical theatre, stage managing, costuming, etc.—a costumer will understand the needs of the actor better with some experience in acting. We also encourage theatre minors and non-majors to participate in this total theatre concept.
Production work is usually done every afternoon. Volunteers and other workers should plan to work consistent hours if possible every week.
The following descriptions should help students to understand the kinds of jobs which are available, and more in-depth descriptions are listed in the back of this book.

  • Stage Manager: setting up for rehearsals, sweeping the stage when needed, arranging the furniture and the props for rehearsal, taking notes for the director. During performances the Stage Manager is in charge of running the show and of coordinating all backstage activities.
  • Assistant Stage Manager: prompting and helping the stage manager with the production.
  • Stage/Lighting Crew: Working on the set, to building and painting the set, hanging and focusing the lights. May also help with props or other jobs on stage.
  • Running Crew: Help change the scenery, costumes, and props during rehearsals and performance.
  • Costume Crew: Building or altering costumes for the show.
  • Props Master: Obtaining and maintaining all hand props for the play, supervising props assistants, assigning jobs, make, find, or buy the needed props, setting up prop tables. After performance, puts props away and returns any borrowed materials.
  • Props Assistants: Assisting Props Master.
  • Sound Crew: Creating, recording, and running the sound.
  • Makeup Crew: Assisting actors with makeup and hair.
  • Master Electrician: In charge of hanging and focusing lights.
  • Electrician/Board Operator: The actual running operator of the dimmer system. May also operate follow spots of the other “hands on” electrical/lighting equipment during the show.