Definition: Stage Manager Essay

Submitted By jfitz
Words: 644
Pages: 3

Stage management is a very different type of job in a theatrical production. They have been doing many tasks behind the scenes since between the 1600’s and the Renaissance era. A stage manager is the person in between the production director and the technical director all while making sure everything is correct on both sides. On the other hand the title of a “stage manager” differs in various types of media. The responsibilities and duties of stage managers vary depending on the setting of a production, like a rehearsal setting or a performance setting. Most broadly, it is the stage manager's responsibility to ensure that the director's choices are seen on actual performance night. During rehearsals, the stage manager typically serves as an assistant to the director by recording the blocking, movement of actors on stage in a scene, and ensuring that cast members stay on script, have all the props, and stay on task. Once the house opens for a performance, the stage manager controls everything concerning of the performance by calling the cues for any light changes or sounds (known as "calling the show"). Between the Renaissance and the 16th century, actors and playwrights took upon themselves the, general directorial duties. Stage management first came to be as a role in the 17th century during Shakespeare and Moliere’s time, although it wasn't until the 18th century in England that the term “Stage Manager” was used. This was the first time a person other than actors and playwright was hired to direct or manage the stage. Over time, with the amount of change of theatre such as moveable scenery, and quick costume changes, the stage manager's job was split into two positions—director and stage manager. In a television production the term stage manager is not there. They have what they call a unit production manager, while these jobs are somewhat similar they do have many differences. A “unit production manager” (UPM) is the Directors Guild of America-approved title for the top staff position responsible for the producing of a film or TV production. Alternate titles for this role are usually production manager or production supervisor. He/she would work very closely with the project's line producer. However, it is not uncommon for the line producer to function as UPM as well. A stage manager only works on one show at a time while a UPM may work several movies at once. A UPM also has many different jobs to do that a…