In this course, instructor Karen Loftus explores the responsibilities of a stage manager. You'll learn exercises that will help you demonstrate those responsibilities and the necessary skills of a stage manager to your students. You'll learn how to train your students to serve as stage managers for your school’s productions.

The course takes you through what a stage manager does prior to rehearsal and throughout the rehearsal and performance process to have a smooth-running backstage. It includes learning about the paperwork required, including prompt scripts, rehearsal preparations, notating blocking, and a stage manager’s kit and checklist to wrap it all together.

Course Outline

Lesson 0: Introduction 4:28
Lesson 1: What is Stage Management? 6:21
Lesson 2: Paperwork & Prompt Script 11:55
Lesson 3: Preparing for Rehearsal 14:34
Lesson 4: Rehearsal Responsibilities 9:32
Lesson 5: Blocking & Tracking 12:25
Lesson 6: Outside Rehearsal and Challenges 12:15
Lesson 7: The Final Checklist 5:19

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Standards Addressed

National Core Arts Standards

TH:Pr6.1: Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work - Grade 7

TH:Pr6.1.7.a - Participate in rehearsals for a drama/theatre work that will be shared with an audience.

TH:Pr5.1: Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade 6

TH:Pr5.1.6.b - Articulate how technical elements are integrated into a drama/ theatre work.

California VAPA Standards (2001)

Florida Sunshine State Standards

Georgia Performance Standards 2010 - Theatre Arts


TAHSADIV.4 - Designing and executing artistic and technical elements of theatre
a. Engages in script analysis from the perspective of technical theatre collaborators
b. Plans and creates technical elements of a theatrical production
c. Collaborates with other members of a creative team to create and execute formal and informal theatrical performances
d. Engages in peer leadership experiences including design and technical direction

TAHSADIV.5 - Directing by conceptualizing, organizing, and conducting rehearsals for performance
a. Examines the structure of the rehearsal process
b. Creates a prompt script with blocking notation for a 2-3 character scene
c. Develops a rehearsal schedule to prepare a scene for performance
d. Collaborates on formal and information theatrical performances
e. Engages in peer leadership experiences in the direction of a short play

TAHSADIV.7 - Integrating various art forms, other content areas, and life experiences to create theatre
a. Examines how theatre incorporates all art forms via a collaborative process
b. Explores the relationship between theatre and other non-arts disciplines
c. Synthesizes concepts and skills from other disciplines to create theatre

TAHSADIV.9 - Exploring the business of theatre
a. Explores careers in theatre through participation in various production roles and activities
b. Articulates how participation in theatre equips students for success in careers within and outside the theatre community
c. Examines and critiques the structure and standard operating procedures of commercial, professional, amateur, and educational theatre organizations
d. Researches and assesses career opportunities in theatre production and management
e. Assesses the interrelated responsibilities of the various roles involved in production and management


TAHSTTI.1 - Designing and executing artistic and technical elements of theatre
a. Compares and contrasts the characteristics of different types of performance spaces such as a proscenium stage, studio/black box, thrust stage, classroom, arena, or found space.
b. Analyzes ways in which the characteristics of a performance space can influence production decisions properties, lighting, sound, costuming, and makeup
d. Creates a chart of the responsibilities of technical personnel, including designers, builders, and operators
e. Demonstrates theatre safety practices as well as an ethical use of available technology and resources
f. Considers the interrelated nature of lighting, costumes, makeup, sound, properties, scenery, acting, and direction to create in a unified theatrical production
g. Researches and selects lighting, sound, scenery, properties, costumes, and makeup to help create a particular theatrical environment
h. Selects, documents, and arranges props, furniture, costumes, and sound to create the setting and environment of the plot
i. Uses standard safety and operating procedures for tools and equipment used in formal and informal theatre, film/video, and electronic media productions

TAHSTTI.5 - Designing and executing artistic and technical elements of theatre (Stage Management)
a. Develops a schedule and organizational plan for selected areas of theatre operation
b. Applies the established concepts of stage management
c. Identifies the duties of the stage manager in the production process
d. Implements technical theatre etiquette in rehearsal and production settings
e. Assists the director in all areas of the production
f. Maintains effective communication and safety procedures with members of the cast and crew


TAHSFTII.4 - Designing and executing artistic and technical elements of theatre
a. Identifies and defines the various roles of production personnel (sound/lighting, set, scenic, costume, makeup, marketing, and business aspects)
b. Identifies and applies basic elements and procedures involved in the construction of props, scenery, and platforms.
c. Distinguishes between effective and ineffective artistic designs
d. Infers elements of artistic design from scripts
e. Formulates a conceptualization of artistic design from scripts
f. Hypothesizes possible audiences responses to artistic elements
g. Creates product based on conceptualization
h. Demonstrates ability to plan, create, and assemble the technical elements for a scene or short play

TAHSFTII.9 - Exploring the business of theatre
a. Lists and defines the skill sets for the various theatre arts careers
b. Charts the skills learned in theatre arts which transfer to the workplace
c. Applies the business elements of a production (e.g., creating a portfolio or resume, printing, advertising, budgeting)
d. Demonstrates awareness of the discipline, knowledge, skills, and education required for careers in theatre
e. Collects and displays samples of theatre portfolios
f. Creates and revises a cost-benefit analysis of a production
g. Critiques sample theatre portfolios
h. Demonstrates mastery of various areas of business elements of theatre
i. Performs the tasks of business theatre personnel during productions

Georgia Performance Standards 2017 - Theatre Arts

Alberta, Canada

Technical Theatre/Design 10-20-30 - Costume

1 - demonstrate understanding of the purpose of costume

Technical Theatre/Design 10-20-30 - Management - Sound

1 - demonstrate understanding of the purpose of stage sound

Ontario, Canada