What is Stage Management? – SMA Webinar

Year of the Stage Manager 2020
Have you heard that 2020 is the Year of the Stage Manager?

Why 2020? Because 100 years ago, on February 16, 1920, the executive council of Actor’s Equity Association carried a motion that changed the contractual language to include Stage Managers and Assistant Stage Managers. (Read more about it on my friend Jennifer Leigh-Sears Scheier’s Stage Management History blog for Stage Directions.)

There’s now a dedicated website to the Year of the Stage Manager, and really the point of it all is to celebrate and educate about this section of the theatre industry. It’s a grass roots project, and anyone can participate. There’s a lot of activity in the dedicated Facebook group, which looks for members who are NOT JUST stage managers, but also people to help celebrate and appreciate us. The “SMInstagram” account has different stage managers takeover for the day, from not only around the country, but a few international colleagues as well. They are saved as highlights for later viewing, and you can check out my takeover from January 24th. There are several hashtags to use in social media, too, including #yearofthestagemanager, #ysm2020 and the newest, #CreditYourSM. (The latter is an aim to get billing in programs, press releases, and websites, whenever actors and designers are listed.)

Meanwhile, I coordinate the member webinars for the Stage Managers’ Association, and we decided that we’d open up the first one of the year to the general public, on the subject of “What is Stage Management?” While the discussion was carried by stage managers, we encourage it being shared beyond our membership and those with this job title, to our colleagues and theatre professors. Please enjoy the video and feel free to spread it around!

If you ARE a member of the Stage Managers’ Association, log in to the members-only section of the website to view additional webinar recordings. Past subjects have included Best Practices for Job Applications (resumes, cover letters and more), SM history (with Jennifer mentioned above), an expansion of my Opera SM 101 blog series, and the Stage Manager Survey.