CMU School of Drama

Friday, May 31, 2013

A Spectacular Canvas. The 2013 Vivid Sydney Festival Kicks Off Vivid Sydney, an annual 18-day festival of light, music, and ideas, will once again transform Sydney’s skies, waters, and landmarks into a spectacular canvas of light. Kicking off the festival is Australia’s own creative innovators The Spinifex Group who have taken over the Sydney Opera House sails with a newly commissioned artwork, “PLAY”, transporting audiences through a playfully projected journey that will celebrate Vivid Sydney’s light, music and ideas in an immersive new way.

So you want to be a theatre producer?

Culture professionals network | Guardian Professional: How does an independent theatre producer ever get started? Well, consider this: any show needs investors. Investors need convincing with an attractive proposition, which means a strong creative team and an attractive cast. They need convincing too, which probably necessitates getting a theatre on board. How do you do that? Well, it helps to have investors and a decent proposal. How's that for a pile up of Catch-22s?

10 Ways Being a Theatre Major Prepared Me for Success

Wayfarer: I have a confession to make. I was a theatre major in college (yes, complete with the snooty but appropriate ”re” spelling). I’ll wait for you to stop snickering. Judson University (it was Judson College when I attended), the small liberal arts college outside of Chicago labeled the major course of studies as “Communication Arts” which is what I tend to put on resumes and bios because I realize that “theatre major” tends to elicit thoughts such as “Do you want fries with that?”


SEEKING:  TECH DIRECTOR, Gretna Theatre (PA).  IMMEDIATE OPENING! The Technical Director is primarily focused on the building and installation of scenic elements for the season, working closely with and realizing the designs of the scenic designer, as well as scheduling 6 scenic carpenters and procuring supplies for the shop in line with the budgets. Full time seasonal employment now through August, 2013, housing opposite the lake with shared kitchen facilities and round trip transportation reimbursement provided, pay $600+ per week depending on qualifications.  This is not an entry level position, needs experience.

Gretna Theatre is producing its 86th season of summer stock at the Mt. Gretna Playhouse, Mt. Gretna, PA (12 miles southeast of Hershey in South Central PA). The 2013 season includes: Tony winner Faith Prince in Concert,  June 1 (Benefit performance); two-time Grammy winner Pam Tillis in Concert, June 8 (Benefit performance); "My Way" June 13 – 23; "Watson: The Last Great Tale of the Legendary Sherlock Holmes" (East Coast Premiere) June 27 – 30; "Kiss Me Kate" July 11 – 21; "The Wizard of Oz" July 25 - August 3; "The Bikinis" August 22 - 25.

Job Starts: Now
Job Ends: 8/30/2013 
Pay: $600+ per week

Email Resume and references immediately to:  Larry Frenock, Producing Artistic Director

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Take (more than) Five: The Argentine Production Model

HowlRound: The first time I met Agustina Muñoz in Buenos Aires, she just barely managed to squeeze me into her packed schedule. Apologizing for the short time she was able to meet up, she told me she was starting a very intense rehearsal process for a new play that was going up as part of a festival at the Centro Cultural Ricardo Rojas. “It's going to be really short,” she said. “We only have three months to rehearse.”

How Embracing Social Media Can Creatively Enhance Connectivity Within Your Community

ARTSblog » Blog Archive: In January 2012 I started the New Year with an ARTSblog entitled So Many Resources, So Little Time. I wrote, “With endless emails, text messages, Facebook, Twitter, and RSS feeds, I sometimes feel a little overwhelmed.” For the most part, that statement was true – except for one thing. I wasn’t using Twitter! Of course after mentioning Twitter in the resources ARTSblog someone would reach out to me in an email requesting my Twitter handle. Uh oh. Once upon a time I had set up an account, but when I tried to remember what the original handle was and how to login? Forget about it. I had been caught red-handed!

Actors Equity Day


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

X-Rays Of Women Wearing Corsets If you hate Spanx, you will LOATHE these X-rays of women wearing corsets. Gasping for breath. Via Jezebel

Letter and Apology to Dancers About To Enter the Dance World

FROM THE GREEN ROOM: Dance/USA's e-Journal: Let’s start with the bad news. Remember the plot from every dance movie ever, where the protagonist overcomes adversity to get a starring role in a major dance company? (See Fame and its inevitable remake, Staying Alive, Center Stage, Center Stage: Turn It Up, Billy Elliot, Black Swan, The Turning Point, among thousands of others.) It turns out there aren’t many of those jobs any more. Sure, there are a few gigs that come with juicy solo parts and health insurance, but they’re pretty hard to find, and as institutional companies fold or devolve into chaos one by one (Cunningham, Brown, et al) they’re getting rarer and rarer.

University Job: Production Manager - Department of Theater, Dance & Performance Studies, University of California, Berkeley The Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies seeks a Production Manager to organize, supervise, and coordinate all TDPS productions. This position incorporates both administrative and academic responsibilities including budget development, planning and contracting for up to 15 productions annually in three performing spaces, staff supervision, and oversight of students as designers, cast and crew. May teach stage management. For further information on TDPS see:

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

How to Text From Email

Lifehack: Texting is quickly becoming the preferred method of communication in the modern world, with 8.6 trillion Short Messaging Services (SMS) messages being sent on an annual basis. For some of us, texting is the only way to communicate. Sometimes it’s just easier to send someone a quick message instead of having a long conversation with them. Maybe your workplace won’t allow you to talk on the phone (i.e you work in a call center or attend a lot of meetings). Most cell providers allow unlimited texting, so it can be a great way to conserve cell minutes. No matter what your reason for texting is, it’s not a feature you want to lose.

Draft Standards for Arena Rigging in Public Review

PLSN: Two draft standards relevant to arena rigging have been added those available for public review on PLASA’s website. BSR E1.6-4 is for the simple control systems for chain hoists to lift portable trusses and grids. BSR E1.39 is for personal fall arrest systems used by people working on those trusses and grids and other portable structures - such as lighting towers - commonly used for shows.

J-O-B Systems

Monday, May 27, 2013

Who is the Broadway Touring Audience? The 2011-12 Report Revealed!

The Producer's Perspective: Almost two decades ago, the Broadway League began tracking the demographics of the touring audience for Broadway shows, understanding that the audience on the road is a feeder audience for Broadway.

Sixth Annual Excellence In Live Design Awards Announced

Concerts content from Live Design Magazine: The following have been selected as the winners of the Sixth Annual Excellence in Live Design Awards, chosen online by our readers.


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Lucy Liu On The Role Race Plays On Breaking Into The Entertainment Industry, And Succeeding In It

ThinkProgress: I wanted to thank Kerensa Cardenas of Women In Hollywood for flagging this interview with Lucy Liu in, of all places, Net-A-Porter magazine, which is wonderful in part for Liu’s real talk on race in Hollywood. She brings up two separate issues that I think are equally important to acknowledge in the conversation about how to make Hollywood a place that represents the world more accurately, and that, as a result, tells more kinds of stories.

Cover Story | Lucy Liu : True Colours

Magazine | NET-A-PORTER.COM: A successful movie career almost didn’t happen for LUCY LIU, as she fought against her parents’ wishes and racial stereotypes. She talks to TIFFANY BAKKER about prejudice, taking on a man’s role and her search for love

I won't give Zach Braff one dime Zach Braff is trying to raise money on Kickstarter to fund a movie he wants to make. Zach Braff is a good actor and a fine filmmaker. GARDEN STATE was a terrific movie. But I wouldn’t give him a dime. Why? Because it defeats the whole purpose of Kickstarter.

University Job: Assistant/Associate Professor of Theatre (Scenic Designer), Wayland Baptist University A full-time faculty position, the Assistant/Associate Professor of Theatre (Scenic Designer) is primarily responsible for the design, construction and technical direction of all theater productions as well as teaching undergraduate theater design and technical theatre courses.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Blacksmithing a Klingon Bat'leth

Tested: Star Trek Into Darkness is out today, so AweMe's resident swordsmith Tony Swatton recreates Worf's Klingon Bat'leth from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Swatton had previously made Klingon weapons for Star Trek productions, but never a Bat'leth. Here, he plasma cuts the shape out of a sheet of solid steel, and then refines its edges with a belt grinder. Klingons played a small role in J.J. Abram's first Star Trek movie (the Klingon prison scene was cut out of the theatrical release), and publicity photos have indicated that Klingons may play some part in the new movie. But do Bat'leth's make an appearance?

Response to "In the Intersection"

HowlRound: I have spent my professional life in intersections of the commercial and not-for-profit theater. I started work in the mid-seventies when the not-for-profit theater and the commercial theater were quite distinct from each other. I worked for a service organization that provided technical assistance to emerging not-for-profit theaters. The consultants talked about subscriptions and development and boards and mission. Commercial theater was only relevant as an example of what these not-for-profits weren’t. Then I worked at the Yale Rep and then Manhattan Theatre Club for more than twenty years and observed firsthand not-for-profit and commercial engagement in many guises.


Friday, May 24, 2013

Email is Not the Problem – You Are Can you count the hours you spent on emails this month? How about this week, or even today? I’m pretty sure you can’t. In the maelstrom of our office and personal life, email has become a cornerstone of our daily activity for good and bad. Spending countless hours checking email has become a habit ingrained in our subconscious. Checking and managing email has the potential to become a sinkhole for just about anyone. In 2013, the typical corporate email user sends and receives an estimate of 115 emails; that’s roughly 2.5 hours every day spent only on writing them. That doesn’t leave the “typical corporate email user” much time to do anything else and is why we must learn how to process email better.

Layout Tricks with a Framing Square

Online Extras - Woodsmith Magazine: In Woodsmith No. 174, we covered the five squares we feel are essential in your shop. One of those is the framing square. Although this tool may be considered a carpenter's tool and not necessarily a tool for the woodworker, there are several applications in the shop that might surprise you.


First Stage, a leading voice in TYA theater, seeks an energetic and experienced Production Manager. The Production Manager is responsible for the overall management of the Production Department, balancing artistic vision and integrity with practical needs including deadlines and budgets. The Production Manager will be responsible for budget management, staff development, and creative problem solving. Regular evening and weekend work required.

Responsibilities include:

  • Budget and schedule the needs of the Production Department to ensure the fulfillment of planned productions, presentations and other events
  • Coordinate effective communication among the directors, designers and all members of production staff
  • Facilitate design and production meetings, ensure deadlines are met and oversee the tech/production process
  • Create and monitor schedules for all production activities
  • Oversee annual production budget, monitor expenses and provide timely updates of actual expenses and projections
  • Contract production staff (scenic, props, costume, lighting, sound, other production support)
  • As a member of Management Team, work with the Management Team to develop strategic plans for the future.

The successful candidate will maintain high standards while being mindful of the staff’s quality of life. A minimum five years of production management required. Degree in theatre preferred. Knowledge of all production elements including: scenic, properties, lighting, costuming, sound, video, and stage management. Previous experience working within SDC, AEA, USA, and IATSE policies preferred. Knowledge of both Mac and PC platforms as well as the following programs: MS Word, Excel and Outlook, Sharepoint and Vectorworks.
This position is a full time salaried position. Benefits include vacation, medical and dental insurance, and life insurance/long term disability coverage upon eligibility.
To Apply:
Send cover letter, resume and references to First Stage 325 W Walnut St. Milwaukee, WI 53212. Email to, subject line “Production Manager Application”. No calls please. First Stage seeks diversity in the workplace and is an equal opportunity employer.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Power tool industry too powerful to regulate? Table saw accidents are painful, life-changing and expensive. Each year, more than 67,000 U.S. workers and do-it-yourselfers suffer blade contact injuries, according to government estimates, including more than 33,000 injuries treated in emergency rooms and 4,000 amputations.

The Met Packs Up Its Notorious ‘Ring’ Machine The Metropolitan Opera’s “Ring” machine — the huge, glitch-prone contraption that served as a single set for all four operas in the Wagnerian cycle — rumbled upstage this week for a less-than-grand season finale. No Valkyries or Rhinemaidens or gods were around, just stagehands assigned to take it apart and send it off to storage.


Tech Director Position

The Irondale Ensemble Project, a 30-year-old permanent Ensemble, Off-Broadway theater company, and founders and directors of the Irondale Center, (a 5-year-old Arts Center located in Fort Greene, Brooklyn) is seeking qualified candidates for the position of Technical Director. The Irondale Center is a 5,400 square-foot open-space theater with a 26' foot ceiling; flexible seating; a suspended, chain-winch driven lighting grid; and an up-to-date lighting, video, and sound equipment inventory. The Irondale Ensemble Project (the resident ensemble),produces 2 to 4 original productions each season, and the Center co-produces or hosts up to 30 additional events, per year.

The Technical Director is responsible for maintaining equipment, scenic and costume inventory, and other production-related aspects of the Center, including maintenance of the Center's rep plot; for acting as technical liaison with large co-productions; for acting as production manager, TD, and lighting designer on small co-productions and other (sometimes non-theatrical) events; for TD duties related to productions of the Ensemble Project (including coordinating and supervising lighting and construction, put-ins, runs, and strike; and hiring and supervising crews as required); and to manage budgets for various aspects of production activity.

Necessary knowledge and skills should include current lighting (Source-4) equipment; computer control systems especially ETC ION lighting control system, sound system set-up and mixing; general technical theater skills including hanging soft goods, laying dance floors, and general theater construction methods and materials; seating needs; production and work-site safety; and projection and theatrical computer systems.

The successful candidate will have excellent organizational skills, will be able to function as a "team player", and will be capable of maintaining a positive attitude and sense of humor under most circumstances. This position is “hands-on,” and is an excellent early-career opportunity; the position also provides ample opportunity to design lighting and/or sound. The position start date is flexible but must occur sometime between mid-June to mid-July 2013, to allow for overlap and training with current TD.

Interested candidates should email a cover letter and resume with three references to Maria Knapp, Managing Director, at For more information about Irondale visit

Irondale is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The Irondale Center
a breathtaking room, limitless possibilities

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

23 Of The Best Pieces Of Advice Ever Given To Graduates

TheGrindstone: A great commencement or class-day speech sticks with you forever. You remember it when you accept for your first job, and when you quit it.Too many, unfortunately, offer the same warmed-over clichés, like “dream big,” “work hard,” or “follow your passion.” But there are some lessons that are truly worth remembering, or so well-said that they stick in the memory longer than just about anything else. We’ve collected some of the greatest speeches and pieces of advice, worth reading and listening to for any grad, or anyone looking for guidance.

Heroic Theatergoer Smashes Cell Phone, Gets Thrown Out

Gothamist: We can't count the number of times we've wanted to enact vengeance on some inconsiderate audience member whose cell phone goes off during a performance. But, like most people, we just bottle that fury up deep down inside and take it out on the break room vending machine later. Not Kevin Williamson. Last night the National Review writer was in attendance at the marvelous new musical Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812 when one theatergoer's incessant cell phone use finally drove him over the edge... into vigilantism.


Job Announcement

Job Title:                   Assistant Professor/Technical Director

Department:               Visual and Performing Arts

Position Type:             Faculty            

Salary:                        Commensurate with education and experience

Deadline:                    Open until filled



Responsibilities will be related to leading the technical production program for the university.  Other duties may include, but are not limited to the following:
  1. Create and promote a design/technical program.
  2. Build sets for the department’s theatrical productions.
  1. Recruit, train, mentor, and coach students in all aspects of technical production (sets, lighting, costumes, and properties) for career opportunities.
  2. Supervise and maintain theatre facility, equipment, and other inventory upkeep.
  3. Coordinate local and out-of-town travel to intercollegiate theatre competitions/festivals.
  4. Teach courses in stagecraft, scene design, lighting, sound, and other courses related to the successful candidate’s specific research/performance interests.
  5. Perform other duties and responsibilities as assigned.

Masters degree in a theatre technology-related area is required; work toward doctorate is preferred.
The successful candidate must have notable teaching success, preferably in coaching student designers for competition.  S/he must have professional theatre or touring experience, proficiency in multi-media and computer-aided design, with a strong working knowledge of set construction, sound, props, rigging, theatre technology, and lighting.

Provide instruction to students in set construction, scenic & lighting design, scene painting, and computer-aided design.

Application Process:
Applicants must submit the following:
  • a portfolio of previous technical production experience;
  • a cover letter describing career goals and research interests relative to this position;
  • official transcripts;
  • a detailed curriculum vitae; and
  • a list of three references.

Application materials should be mailed to: 

                                    Office of the Provost/Vice-President for Academic Affairs
                                    Coppin State University
                                    2500 West North Avenue
                                    Baltimore, Maryland 21216