Each Stage Troupe production has its own technical crew. All crew members are assigned by the Technical Advisor to a position based on interest and skill. Technicians can work on more than one show if they so choose. Any actors interested in teching are also welcome and encouraged to do so even if they are cast in the season. Depending on difficulty and interest, many positions also include assigned assistants.
Stage Troupe takes pride in its technicians. Each season we have a pool of dedicated technicians and designers prepared not only to take on the creative responsibility inherent in our productions, but also to teach and pass on knowledge to newer or less experienced members. In order to become a head of department, technicians must serve at least one season as an assistant.
Each department ultimately answers to the Technical Director of the show, who in turn answers to Troupe’s Technical Advisor. The TD’s responsibility is to keep his or her crew on track and in line with the director’s vision and serve as a guide and resource for crew members. The TD works closely with the Stage Manager to facilitate open communication between both sides of production.
To find the Tech Application or view guides on some of our technical departments, visit the Forms and Resources page.
rundown of tech positions
The SM acts as liaison between the director and the technical director throughout the process. He or she works closely with the director, attending every rehearsal and running the show on performance nights. The SM’s responsibilities include managing director and actor schedules and contact information, taking blocking and line notes, sending rehearsal reports to the crew, and ensuring a smooth run of the rehearsal room. During tech week, it is the Stage Manager’s responsible to lead the run crews, including Props, Costumes, Hair/Make-Up, Lights, and Sound.
The MC works closely with the TD and Set Designer to determine a show’s set needs. He or she leads the build crew and is chiefly responsible for the construction of the show’s set. The MC should have a good knowledge of the use of the power tools found in our Space and should understand how to follow set designs.
The LD works closely with the director and TD to determine the show’s lighting needs. Also working in conjunction with the Set Designer, the LD creates the lighting plot to best suit the style of the show. He or she also leads the lighting crew in hanging lighting fixtures, creating cues, and programming the board during tech week. At least one member of the lighting team will also run the board during performances.
The Sound Designer works with the director and TD to find sound effects and determine suitable music for the show. He or she may need to edit audio files and/or record effects for the show and will operate microphones for musicals. At least one member of the sound team will run the sound board during the show.
The Costume Designer works with the director and TD to design the best look for the characters of the show, whether it involves researching the period of the show or determining personality quirks best represented through clothing. He or she will find or make all pieces for the show, and a few members of the team will help run costume changes during performances.
The Props Master works with the director and TD to determine all properties required for the production, including pieces appropriate for the period and for the style of the show and characters. He or she will find or create each prop for the show, and a few members of the team will place and manage the props before and during each performance.
Hair and Make-Up Artist
The H/M Artist works with the director and TD to determine the look of each character with regards to hair and make-up. This includes period-appropriate styles as well as character-influenced quirks. He or she will design any special looks that may be needed including aging or gore effects. The H/M team will prepare the actors each performance night.
The Set Designer works closely with the director, TD, and Master Carpenter in order to draft a version of the set that goes along with the director’s vision, as well as remains safe and doable within the theater space. He or she will draft the design early in the process in order to present it to the lighting crew and the set decoration team in a timely matter. He or she should have an understanding of design and moderate skills in carpentry, and should be prepared to research period or location-appropriate styles in order to best represent the show.
The scenic artist works closely with the set designer and the set decorator to carry out the director’s artistic vision in terms of color. Essentially, the scenic artist is in charge of paint. The scenic artist plans color schemes and paint designs, and during build week, the artist manages a crew of painters to complete a set.
The Set Decorator works with the director, the TD, and the Set Designer to create the appropriate look for the show’s set. After the Set Designer drafts the set design, the Set Decorator is responsible for choosing period/style appropriate furniture, a suitable color palette, and other set dressings including any pieces on the set that naturalizes it, such as paintings and decorations. The Set Decorator should have a working knowledge of the principles of painting as well as be prepared to work late hours during tech week.
The build/run crew is chiefly responsible for the construction of the show’s set under the leadership of the Master Carpenter. If the show requires it, the build/run crew will also be responsible for any set changes that must be made during the show under the leadership of a Stage Manager.