International Stage Management day is on October 10 and we think you should buy a ticket to see a theatre production in honor of the unsung heroes of stage management. Did you know that Shakespeare once lived in a house on the present-day site of the Barbican theatre? How refreshing to know that one of the world’s most famous playwrights who is well-known for using stage managers resided on the same grounds where stage management occurs today.
History of International Stage Management Day
How thrilling and exciting is it to be at the theatre watching actors sing, dance, and perform on stage with various props and equipment? You have stage managers and stage management to thank for that. What you sit and watch for a couple of minutes takes a lot of dedication, planning, prioritizing, and management to put together.
Stage management was a fairly new concept in the 1300s and only emerged as a distinct role in theatre in the 1600s. Stage management facilitates the organization and coordination of an event or theatrical production. Stage managers juggle many balls during all stages (excuse the pun) of production. They’re planners, organizers, multi-taskers, and level-headed individuals who understand the importance of diffusing a stage crisis and maintaining a cool head.
To offer maximum support on a production set, a stage manager must have a general understanding of all aspects of production and offer organizational support to keep the wheels of the stage rotating. A stage manager doesn’t just manage the physical stage, he/she coordinates and supports the different teams involved in the day-to-day running of theatre production, from rehearsals right through to performances and then all post-show tasks.
Some duties of a stage manager include creating and setting up rehearsal schedules; managing furniture and props; arranging costume fittings; and liaising with theater departments, producers, actors, and technical crew.
International Stage Management Day has been observed annually since 2013 to appreciate the efforts of the stage management crews and to bring awareness to their importance in theatre production.
International Stage Management Day timeline
In the Renaissance era, playwrights and actors take up the roles of modern-day stage managers.
Stage management roles during Shakespeare’s time are left to young apprentices learning the trade.
In Europe, the term ‘stage manager’ is first used.
A glorious day set aside to celebrate stage management crews.
International Stage Management Day FAQs
What are the activities involved in stage management?
Stage managers schedule rehearsals, coordinate the stage production, and communicate the director’s wishes to the rest of the team.
Why is stage management important?
Stage management is important to ensure that all aspects of a production are working in tandem to entertain an audience.
What is the difference between a stage manager and a house manager?
While a stage manager coordinates all aspects of a production unit, a house manager oversees the day-to-day activities of the theatre venue. They are the liaison between the production crew and the theatre owners.
How to Observe International Stage Management Day
Appreciate a stage manager
Stage managers do a whole lot to keep a theatrical production running smoothly. If you have a friend who works behind the scenes, send him or her a simple gift basket or a kind word of appreciation.
Learn about a stage manager’s role
Visit your favorite theatre and ask to shadow a stage manager for a couple of hours. You may be delightfully surprised at how much you could learn about stage management in just a few hours.
Show your support online
There are many ways to support the wonderful jobs that stage managers do. You can donate your time, resources, or even sweet treats to a theatrical production unit.
5 Interesting Facts About A Stage Manager's Role
A stage manager facilitates interactions between all creative and technical departments.
Stage managers compile notes for all parts of the onstage production.
First one in, last one out
Stage managers supervise the installation and removal of the set, sound, and lighting equipment.
A stage manager is responsible for maintaining the props, furniture, and set during the production.
Risk assessment officer
Stage managers are responsible for maintaining the safety of the company.
Why International Stage Management Day is Important
There would be no theatre without stage managers
Can you imagine how chaotic a production would be without a stage manager? We guess no one else wants to see that happen.
We can celebrate the people who do so much for theatre
International Stage Management Day allows us to celebrate the people who do so much for theatre. It is a special day to thank them for their hard work and bring awareness to the importance of their job roles.
It reminds us to appreciate the theatre
It's easy to get lost in a movie, but an immersive theatre is an art form that many still enjoy and appreciate.
International Stage Management Day dates