A career in the field of entertainment can be extraordinarily rewarding, but in order to succeed, an actor must be dedicated and well prepared for the challenges ahead. Fortunately, those who choose to follow the footlights into the world of theatre will find that acting isn’t their only option. In fact, the stage and movie production industry offers a wide array of career opportunities.
In a theatre-related profession, a college degree is not always a necessity, but it will help you prepare for the demands of the job you seek. The competition is fierce, and many people compete for a limited number of jobs. It is important to give yourself every advantage through formal education, serving an internship, volunteering or teaching.
A Career in Theatre
Those with a desire to work in theatre will find that there are a multitude of opportunities for anyone with appropriate training and experience. In addition to major national theatre productions, there are many positions available in regional theatre, summer stock, museums, theme parks, schools and other venues.
Some of the most high-profile jobs in theatre:
- Actor: Actors are the cornerstone of the theatre. They make written characters come alive through convincing speech, movement and expression.
- Artistic Director: The artistic director sets the agenda for the theatre company to ensure the shows reflect the goals of the organization.
- Backstage Personnel: The backstage crew is responsible for building sets, operating equipment, constructing and moving props. This group helps support the designers and performers and can include carpenters, metal workers and other construction-related personnel.
- Choreographer: In productions that include dance or sequenced movement, the choreographer designs singular or synchronized routines for actors, dancers and singers.
- Costume Designer: The costume designer is in charge of designing all of the costumes that are worn by the performers. Clothing may be produced in-house or outsourced.
- The Director: In theatre, the director usually has the ultimate authority over the elements that make up the production. This includes wide discretion in the creative decision making process.
- Hair and Makeup: Hair and makeup specialists work to alter the appearance of a performer to match the vision of the writer and director.
- Lighting Experts: Lighting specialists are critical to ensure theatre lighting reflects the mood of the production as well as illuminates the performers so they can be seen. This field includes designers, rig operators and equipment maintenance technicians.
- Set Designers: Sets are critical to the success of a production, and the set designer works with the director to create sets that enhance the experience for the audience.
- Sound Engineer: The sound engineer is responsible for all aspects of sound production. They work to optimize room acoustics, speech clarity, music and sound effects.
- Stage Manager: Theatre productions are fast moving and require tight physical coordination. The stage manager ensures that the show shifts seamlessly from scene to scene.
Exciting Theatre Career Opportunities
As it has for centuries, the theatre continues to offer a fulfilling career path for those who are hardworking, dedicated, punctual and passionate. Like any field where the competition for jobs is intense, the right training and persistence will eventually pay large dividends.
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