Production Team Positions
There is a surprisingly large number of moving parts required to put up a theatrical production. This page covers the essential technical and creative roles that individuals may perform on a production. If you encounter a term in the field that isn't covered by this page, please reach out to us and we will add the definition below!
For more information on theater terminology, click here.
In charge of the entire production, including selecting designers, running cast rehearsals, and managing the show's artistic direction. Collaborates closely with the Stage Manager.
+ Stage Manager
Assists the Director by managing actor schedules, taking notes during rehearsals, calling cues during each performance, and so much more. The Stage Manager essentially makes sure the production does not fall apart.
+ Production Designer
Oversees the artistic and aesthetic direction of the show's set, lighting, sound, costume, props, and projections designs as well as choreography. The Production Designer does not replace designers, but works closely with each of them to create a cohesive overall design. Additionally, not every production has a Production Designer, and the Production Designer always collaborates very closely with the Director.
Researches the script's details to assure things such as historical authenticity, as well as avoid things such as inconsistencies. Works closely with the Director and occasionally the Playwright / Composer / Librettist if the play is still undergoing revisions.
The writer of the script for a play.
The writer of the music or songs for a musical or play with music.
The writer of the libretto (script and overall story) for a musical.
+ Musical Director
For musicals or plays with music, the Musical Director teaches the actors their singing parts as well as leads band (or pit) rehearsals. Sometimes, the Musical Director is divided into a Vocal Coach and Band Leader.
Choreographs dance and movement for a musical or play. Essentially serves as the "designer" for physical action.
+ Movement Choreographer
Like a normal Choreographer, but for non-musical productions or plays with music that feature extensive (often abstract) physical action.
+ Fight Choreographer
Like a Movement Choreographer, but for onstage violence to assure the safety and comfort of actors.
+ Set Designer
Designs the production's set, working in Vectorworks to create a set plot and with the Master Carpenter to construct the set. The Set Designer often collaborates with the Properties (Props) Designer.
+ Lighting Designer
Designs the production's lighting, working in Vectorworks to create a light plot and with the Master Electrician to hang and focus the lights.
+ Sound Designer
Designs the production's sound, including the use of microphones, the arrangement of speakers, any and all sound effects, and occasionally live or recorded music.
+ Costume Designer
Designs the production's costumes, first drafting designs and then working to either assemble outfits or construct the costumes themselves. The Costume Designer collaborates closely with the Hair and Make-up Designer.
+ Hair and Make-up Designer
Applies the actors' make-up and fixes their hair before each performance. The Hair and Make-up Designer collaborates closely with the Costume Designer.
+ Properties (Props) Designer
Assembles or constructs all necessary props for the production. The Props Designer often collaborates with the Set Designer.
+ Projections Designer
Creates all of the video content for digital projections, as well as supervises the placement of projectors.
Manages social media campaigns, ticket advertisements, and poster design. The Publicist is sometimes divided into a Social Media Manager and Poster Designer.
+ Master Carpenter
Oversees all construction and works closely with the Set Designer on what is to be made for the set. The Master Carpenter will be in charge of everything that happens in the scene shop, working with power tools and painting the set.
Assistants to the Master Carpenter.
+ Master Electrician
Oversees the load-in of lighting instruments and works closely with the Lighting Designer on what is to be arranged for lighting. The Master Electrician will be in charge of plugging in all of the lighting instruments, hanging and focusing lights, and making sure nothing blows up in the process.
Assistants to the Master Electrician.
+ Light Board Operator (LBO)
Operator for the light board during tech week and performances. While the LBO might assist in creating cues, their core job is to press the "next" button on the Stage Manager's call.
+ Sound Board Operator (SBO)
Operator for the sound board during tech week and performances. While the SBO might assist in creating cues, their core job is to press the "next" button on the Stage Manager's call.