Author Topic: Need advise dealing with new job  (Read 2025 times)

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Dee

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Need advise dealing with new job
« on: Jan 19, 2012, 02:20 pm »
I'm the resident SM at a small  community theater.  This spring we are doing a very large musical. We are are working in conjunction with an Equity Theater that has a much bigger venue and funds.  Anyway when they agreed to join forces they asked that their SM be used and our SM be placed as the Deck Manager.  I have absolutely no problem with this seeing as how I've never worked for them or in their space.  However, it has recently been said in passing that their SM will not be avail for rehearsals and will not be stepping in till right before Tech Week.  So here are my questions...

Is this normal for the Deck Manager to do? 

What should I expect to be paid? 

The small theater I work for usually gives us a small stipend for SMing but I know the large theater actually pays their crew.  I don't want to overstep but at the same time, I don't want to get stepped on.  Any advise would be appreciated. 

Celeste_SM

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Re: Need advise dealing with new job
« Reply #1 on: Jan 19, 2012, 10:25 pm »
Is this an Equity production? I'm going to assume not.

It is normal for the deck manager to come in right before deck week. It's not normal for the stage manager to do so, although some smaller community theaters do it this way to save money.

Pay is hard to say, since it really varies. You should make around what the ASM makes, if you know what that is.

nick_tochelli

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Re: Need advise dealing with new job
« Reply #2 on: Jan 19, 2012, 10:45 pm »
If there is an AEA Stage Manager working the show, I'd actually have to presume the show is Equity.....or at least ruled as a showcase, otherwise how can an Equity member work on a non-equity show? They tend to not be very forgiving of that rule.....like....ever.

My first question to you is simply: Have you been told directly that you will be taking over as the rehearsal SM? Because things said in passing are just that: Said in passing.

Deck managers aren't frequently asked to run rehearsals. They tend to not be involved in the rehearsal process until tech week. However, if your theater and this Equity theater have an agreement to share personnel then there's some leeway to be had in job titles. Flexibility and understanding go a long way in forging those new working relationships between companies. Especially if its a longer term deal.

Now if this is one of those deals where an AEA house is trying to perhaps get out of the cost of producing a whole show and bringing in another company to produce work for them.........yeah...tread a little more carefully. You aren't there to work for the AEA house, you're there as a representative of your Community Theater. Act as professionally as possible and work your tail off...It might pay off for you in spades if you catch someone's eye and they want to work with you again.

I agree with Celeste_SM....it's really hard to give any advice on pay. I've worked for $100 and a metro card, and I've worked for 1200 a week and every where in between.

Talk to your Theater's Artistic Director and see if you can't get some information about what is going on and what is expected of you. If you aren't clear about who's employ you'll be under: Ask. If you're an employee of the larger AEA theater, you may be able to expect base benefits of working for them. If you're employed as a member of the community theater, you're probably entitled to your normal stipend plus maybe a bonus for working on a larger scale. Don't quote me on it, because I'm not privy to this situation's nuances. Best of luck! Let us know how it turns out.

Dee

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Re: Need advise dealing with new job
« Reply #3 on: Jan 26, 2012, 10:04 pm »
Thanks for the advise guys! I have been told at this point I will be running rehearsals and the SM will be coming in right before tech.  I have asked the AD of our company to meet with me as soon as possible to discuss what my duties will be.  I am not to concerned about the pay, I just don't want to feel as if I'm being taken advantage of.  I will reply after I have my meeting.
Thanks again for the advise.

 

riotous