1. Become thoroughly familiar with the play. Obtain a copy of the script for your and your crew’s use from the Director.
2. Attend initial Production Meeting and exchange ideas with the Director concerning visual aspects of the play.
3. Know your budget, space, time and personnel limitations.
4. Do necessary research.
- Technical demands of the play.
- Sight lines and relationships of the auditorium to the stage.
- Alteration possibilities of the proscenium arch.
- Trace of house and asbestos curtain.
- Light bridge position.
- Size and shape of the stage and all architectural features. Obtain or make a ground plan and section drawing of the stage.
- Trace of the cyclorama.
- Rigging equipment.
- Shop facilities and equipment.
6. Check artistic and practical requirements.
7. Obtain the inventory of flats from the Theatre Technical Director (if one is available).
8. Make initial rough drawings and periodically check with the Director for further clarification and assurances that a unity of production styles is evolving.
9. Use stock scenic items in your set whenever possible without destroying the integrity of the unit.
10. Make complete working drawings: ground plan, elevations, detail drawings and, if necessary or wanted, a model, colored perspective sketch, rear elevation, hardware charts, etc. Have 3 blue-lines made of the ground plan.
11. In consultation with the Theatre Technical Director, run an accurate cost estimate for all new materials needed and check against the allowable scenery budget.
12. Meet your deadline for turning over completed drawings to the scene shop.
13. Go over the entire set of plans with the Production’s Technical Director until (s)he is as familiar with the plans as you are. Include cost estimate.
14. Go over the designs and painters’ elevations with the Head of Paint Crew and discuss the order in which units are to be painted, style of technique, color mixing and any other information pertinent to your show.
15. In consultation with the Director and the Head of Properties, select the proper style and period of all props: size, color, shape, special demands, sound, type of material, texture or any other information that will clarify each and every prop. Design props when called to do so.
1. Select draperies, upholstery material or any other item that will demand only your artistic judgment.
2. Supervise the Head of the Paint Crew yourself.
Technical Rehearsal Period
1. Check trim of curtains, drapery folds, set decor or trimmings and those times which directly affect the scenic contribution to the performance.
2. Make any changes which are visually necessary to make a dynamic scenic contribution to the performance.
3. Give special instructions to the Stage Manager concerning those scenic items that need his/her special attention during the run.