Stage Management (BFA/MFA)

The theater program seeks to develop collaborative, resourceful, versatile stage managers who exercise excellent judgment, have broad-based theatrical skills, and the high personal professional standards befitting their position as a leader in the theater.
The program combines integrated knowledge and respect for all aspects of theater at a variety of production levels to create artistically astute, well-versed, thoughtful stage managers. Core Training and Core Curriculum come together in production practice where coursework informs the work on each play. Every stage manager serves as a practical aesthete, working from a core artistic sensibility to support the work of the contributing artists as they all bring the performance to realization.

Program features:
  • The BFA in stage management is a 3.5 year program.
  • The MFA in stage management is a 2.5 year program.
  • One-on-one mentorship and study in small classes, taught by a professional faculty of two full-time master teachers and additional guest artists.
  • Extensive Rutgers Theater Company production opportunities.
  • Easy access to New York City, one of the world's greatest centers of culture, only 40 minutes from the contemplative and focused activity of Rutgers campus life.
The Program
Each semester is anchored by stage management coursework, with the exception of the first year for BFAs. First year  BFAs spend their freshman year exploring and mastering fundamental concepts such as theater history, theatrical production skills, and complementary liberal arts knowledge, in order to immerse themselves more fully in the stage management program in their sophomore year. In each subsequent semester, the program is anchored by a class in stage management and an assignment on a Rutgers Theater Company production. At all levels of study emphasis is placed on the skills of reading, writing and effective communication.
Stage Management Year 1: Assistant Stage Manager

Supplementary courses in artistic team collaboration; Global Theater; Set and Costume design skills; music; and communications. Attend performances throughout the rich local theater scene, including companies such as Two River Theater, George Street Theater, and the McCarter Theater Center.

Stage Management Year 2: Production Stage Manager

Advanced focus on collaboration with designers; directing; Shakespeare; and either historic architecture or puppetry. Alternating trips to explore various urban theater cultures, such as Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia.

Stage Management Final .5 Year: Becoming a Professional

Professional development seminar; specialized course in career transition for stage managers; Avant-garde or other advanced electives. Productions of larger scope include an extended rehearsal process and are staged by professional directors on campus. Spend time in New York City attending shows and meeting theater professionals and contacts.

Rutgers Theater Company Productions
Stage managers should expect at least one stage management assignment per semester, from running crew as a first year  BFA, through and including PSM assignments in your advanced semesters. Rutgers Theater Company experiences have proven a terrific springboard for careers in Broadway, off-Broadway and regional theaters, events management, and a multitude of other production arenas. Each production's stage management team is staffed fully with majors. In and outside the program, students develop longstanding collaborative relationships with directors, playwrights, actors, and designers they encounter at Mason Gross.