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How the Art of Stage Management has Affected my Life as a Whole

by Jillian Northern

Stage management is arguably the most important role in any theatrical production. “Stage managers facilitate communication across all creative and technical departments; act as a right hand to the director; oversee sets, props, lights, and sound; and call all technical cues during performances.” (Berklee College of Music) Though seemingly scary, it proves itself to also be one of the most rewarding jobs to have. Stage management teaches valuable skills, the two most important being organization and communication.

I have found that organization and communication are the keys to success. They go hand and hand with one another. Knowing how to manage my time and manage other people’s time has made me feel more confident in all areas of my life. For example, working as a stage manager has taught me how to have more meaningful, difficult, and productive conversations with others. Being able to organize my thoughts before a conversation, and knowing the best ways to organize them, has proven to be one of the most useful skills I have ever learned. Additionally, stage management has taught me how to problem solve through effective communication.

As for my academic career, stage management has taught me how to utilize spreadsheets, documents, folders, and shared drives. This has been very beneficial for me, because before I was just putting my assignments in my google drive, without ever thinking about how to organize them in an efficient manner.

In my Arts Management co-major, I have learned so much that has gone hand in hand with my stage management career here at Miami. It is so important for arts managers to be able to organize ourselves and our thoughts in order to progress in the arts world. We must be able to manage time well, and we must know how to track our progress.

Jillian Northern is a sophomore Theatre major with an Arts Management co-major from Morrow, Ohio. She spends her free time working at a sushi restaurant in her hometown, taking long walks around campus, and enjoying time with her friends.


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