Author Topic: How to Take the Next Step  (Read 2026 times)

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thomascad

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How to Take the Next Step
« on: May 24, 2015, 12:20 am »
I'm a lifelong theatre fanatic who hit a rough patch and some bad luck in college, but I'm looking to pursue a stage management career now. I was going to go to college for technical theatre, but I chickened out thinking I would never make any money, and decided to go for a communications degree instead at a school that gave me a full ride but had a mediocre theatre program. I thought I would get involved with my college's theatre company anyway, but I dealt with some health issues up until last semester (the second semester of my junior year) that prevented me from doing too much extra-curricular stuff. I did start getting involved in theatre again this past semester, though, ASMing for a student-led production. I'm now stage managing a small, local community theatre's summer musical, and I have a project lined up for the fall where I'll also be stage managing.

While I've done some internships in communications and have good connections in that field, I'm starting to realize that my old love of theatre is creeping up again and I want to pursue it, even if I spent all this time in college studying something different. Sitting in a cubicle is comfy, but I'm not sure if I can do it for the rest of my working life. The problem is I feel like I don't have enough experience or connections, and I feel stuck - I don't know what step to take next, or where to go to make professional connections. I live in the Boston area and tried applying internships at some of the regional theatres in the area this summer, but found that all the positions were filled by theatre students for obvious reasons. I also know that I don't have enough experience to get into a grad program and build my skills there.

Ultimately I feel stuck. I also feel behind; a lot of my friends are in theatre programs, and they're graduating with so many professional connections and opportunities while I never had the ability to make them. I'm graduating next semester and I'd just like some advice on what steps to take next if I want to eventually stage manage professionally. I think I'd be more interested in working for regional theatres rather than pursuing the NYC route. Should I just keep building my resume up at local community theatres, or should I be seeking out other opportunities? And if so, where?

Thanks!

MatthewShiner

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Re: How to Take the Next Step
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2015, 02:09 pm »
I think you might do well looking for an internship with a major regional theater in a large market (Chicago, Washington DC, NYC - although you stated you weren't interested in NYC).  This would allow you to get a regional theater credit to your name, while soaking in connections and the theater scene in this city.

It might help you get focus, and if you feel like you need grad school to help give you a larger skill set, an internship may help you get in.

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