The term stage manager is broad and can be defined as the practice of organizing and coordinating an event or a theatrical production. Stage management encompasses a wide variety of activities, including overseeing the rehearsal process and also coordinating communications with the various production personnel and teams.
Stage management requires you to have a general understanding of all aspects of production and also offer organizational support that ensures the process of production runs very smoothly and efficiently.
A stage manager has the overall responsibility of managing and smoothly running the theatrical production. These productions usually employ a stage management team that consists of the head manager, the assistant stage managers, and the production stage manager. Read on to what a stage manager’s roles and responsibilities are.
Roles and Responsibilities of Stage Managers
Stage managers typically have the responsibility of organizational as well as practical support. They provide these functions to the actors, directors, designers, technicians, and stage crew throughout the production process.
They are also responsible for representing the directors during the performances and make sure that the production runs smoothly.
This role is specifically important to the directors during rehearsals. The director and the stage manager must work side by side. The stage manager also records the director’s decisions on blocking and all other notes for the actors.
Stage managers also keep a track of the logistical scheduling details and are also responsible for communicating what goes into the rehearsals. This ensures that the director is able to focus their full attention on directing.
Here’s a summary of the key duties of stage managers.
- Running and scheduling rehearsals.
- Communicating the wishes of the directors to the crafts and designers team.
- Coordinating the stage crew work.
- Calling actors and queuing the entrances to the performances during the show.
- Overseeing the entire show every time it is performed.
Additionally, the stage manager must work with the directors in order to determine the scheduling of the rehearsals and ensure that everyone involved has been notified of the meetings, rehearsal times, coaching sessions, costume/wig fittings, etc.
Additional Responsibilities of Stage Managers During Rehearsals
- Mark the dimensions of the floor that has been set for the rehearsal.
- Ensure that the rehearsal props and the furnishings are always available for the actors.
- Ensure to attend all the rehearsals.
- Notifies the craftspeople and the designers of any changes that have been made for the rehearsals.
The stage manager is also responsible for all blocking, plus sound, and sets the change cues in the master copy of the script. This is called the prompt book. The information in the prompt book enables the stage manager to run the technical rehearsals.
The technical director and stage manager must work smoothly and efficiently for the stage crew to follow during the set changes. Furniture and prop plans for the complicated sets are usually drawn up by the stage manager and the technical designer.
When the show opens, the director’s work is usually completed. It is then the stage manager’s job to ensure that each and every aspect of the production is running just as the director intended it to.
Salary and Remuneration
At the entry-level, a stage manager works on live performances and events and has less than a year of experience. They can expect an average of around $14.87 per hour. A stage manager with around 1-4 years can expect to make around $14.92 per hour.
Stage managers who have experience of around 5-9 years can make around $19.95 per hour, based on their experience. Additionally, an experienced stage manager with over 10-19 years of experience can expect around $34.02 per hour.
With the information we have outlined above, we believe that we have given you the information that you need to start a career in stage management. This is a job that is mostly done in theaters and production houses. Check out online opportunities in this job and all the best as you apply.