Author Topic: University/drama school Vs. real world experience  (Read 3874 times)

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University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« on: Oct 17, 2007, 03:58 pm »
As a student intending to go into the industry next year, I've thougt hard and long about wheather I should go to uni/drama school to study stage management, or just go straight into work, avoid a £50,000 debt and get 3 years experiance under my belt.

For those of you who who sit and read CVs debating who to hire, which in your opinion is better? A degree in stage management, or SM experiance?
Would be nice to know...
« Last Edit: Oct 17, 2007, 09:11 pm by ljh007 »


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Re: University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« Reply #1 on: Oct 17, 2007, 09:26 pm »
In my opinion and experience hiring, you can't just weigh education against experience. You must really consider each individual candidate on their own merits.

That being said, I would seriously hesitate to hire anyone without a college degree. And it doesn't what your degree is in - just have an education. Know how to think and write and handle yourself. You'll find plenty of discussions about degrees in theatre or stage management in the Student Forum here on the site. In fact, I'll give you my hard-line response again here, which is that if possible, you (generic "you") should go to college. And you should not major in theatre. Personally, I am a huge fan of liberal arts educations.

And my two cents... don't worry about the debt. Yes, being in debt is not great. But this is your education, not a new wardrobe. It will pay for itself over and over in your life. In fact, go for it all and keep busy with SM gigs while in college. You'll get the education and experience at the same time.

You should look in the Student forum to chat with other student SMs who are trying to make the university vs. real-world decision.
But from a hiring perspective, I almost always want a college graduate to be working on my show.


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Re: University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« Reply #2 on: Oct 18, 2007, 12:23 am »
College is an experience I think everyone should have. Even if you do decide to start working... you should keep up with your education. I am graduating with a BFA in Stage Management and honestly... I learned so much about my profession and myself. I grew so much in 4 years and I wouldn't trade it for anything.


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Re: University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« Reply #3 on: Oct 18, 2007, 12:44 am »
Go for the degree.  It's a hard period of your life to wade through, but it's an important step and hoefully you'll learn skills you wouldn't otherwise have been able to master.  take this time to learn to read music.
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Re: University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« Reply #4 on: Oct 18, 2007, 11:49 am »
The key to me is college AND expereience.

College is a time to learn about yourself, learn a lot of life skills - it's not just job preperation.  It helps you become a more well rounded person, and that will help you be a better stage manager.

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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.


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Re: University/drama school Vs. real world experience
« Reply #5 on: Oct 26, 2007, 03:20 pm »
I would reccommend a university verses a drama school, as the first is a more widely accepted form of higher education, and there might be a day some point in your future, 20 years from now, when you're burned out of theatre, or want to settle down with a 9to5 so that you can have a life and family - a university degree is going to look much better than a drama school.  I also feel that you get a fuller education - drama schools are good for drama - but there's more to the world than just theatre, and things about the rest of the world can be applied to theatre.



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