Author Topic: Pickup rehearsals  (Read 1694 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

JJ Hersh

  • New to Town
  • **
  • Posts: 29
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: UC Santa Cruz
  • Current Gig: Stage Management Fellow at Arena Stage
  • Experience: Professional
Pickup rehearsals
« on: Nov 18, 2015, 10:13 pm »
The show I'm working on right now opened last weekend and I decided to schedule a pickup rehearsal for the night before our next performance. My impression was after the show opens the stage manager runs shows and pickup rehearsals, but the director showed up, made the decision to tell the actors to mark their blocking, not do fight choreo and basically ran the rehearsal. Is that appropriate for his role or is my annoyance fair?


  • Site Founder
  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 1353
  • Gender: Female
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: None.
  • Current Gig: SMNetwork *is* my production.
  • Experience: Former SM
Re: Pickup rehearsals
« Reply #1 on: Nov 18, 2015, 11:13 pm »
In a long-running pro show the SM does the brushups. In college it was always the director for me. I was at a liberal arts school that did not expect to turn out any professional stage managers, so they had no set training in place to teach SMs how to do brushups. Since most of the SMs at my school were disgruntled actors who missed getting cast rather than dedicated career SMs, it was just safer to have the faculty directors do the maintenance.


  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 962
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Current Gig: Project Manager, Systems Integration
  • Experience: Former SM
Re: Pickup rehearsals
« Reply #2 on: Nov 19, 2015, 01:49 am »
How long is the run?  I didn't have any runs in school push too far past the two week part. 

In a professional setting on a long run it's the SM's responsibility, you're correct and it's good that you realize and are eager for this.  The primary reason behind this though is more logical than artistic - on two, three, four year run the director has gone off to his/her next project after opening night.  In a collegiate setting the director is presumably still there as faculty, grad student, or some other role. 

But, it is good practice for the SM to have experience with this before leaving undergrad - you are paying for the education and training. 
Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take a place wherever you are and be somebody; get action. -T. Roosevelt


  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 1566
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA, SAG, AFTRA, SMA
  • Current Gig: Caroling, caroling now we go — and looking for my next gig!
  • Experience: Professional
Re: Pickup rehearsals
« Reply #3 on: Nov 19, 2015, 01:46 pm »
SMs usually do run brush-ups, but if the director is present sometimes they take them. And ... lately, a lot of touring shows carry ADs who do the brush-ups in tandem with the SM.


  • Forum Moderators
  • *****
  • Posts: 2477
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Affiliations: AEA, SMA
  • Current Gig: PSM THE LION KING NORTH AMERICAN TOUR; Assc Director and Production Supervisor HUNCHBACK International
  • Experience: Professional
Re: Pickup rehearsals
« Reply #4 on: Nov 19, 2015, 02:16 pm »
Don't get hung up on who runs what . . . in reality there is no set rules for this.

Yes, there are times on a long running show, the PSM/SM would be responsible.  But that is for particular productions.

On my current show, which is running now 14 years . . . there is a level of resident directors, and two levels of Associate directors . . . so, I am not at all responsible for anything artistic . . . all rehearsal are run by a member of the directing/choreography/music department.  At the end of the day it's turning off.

Don't get bent out of shape if on any specific project the requirements change.  You should always be ready to step into action, but feel free to step out of the way as needed.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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.


Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
33 Replies
Last post Oct 23, 2015, 12:43 pm
by megan.clark
9 Replies
Last post Oct 27, 2006, 09:17 pm
by nmno
3 Replies
Last post Jul 21, 2011, 11:54 pm
by Sunny