The Stage Management Concentration

The MFA in Stage Management provides a contemporary approach for students who wish to pursue careers as professional stage managers. The program’s three-year curriculum is designed to expand upon two central principles: 

 

  • Modern stage management requires practitioners to embrace their roles as leaders and caretakers of inclusive workplace environments that allow a diversity of people to work holistically and gracefully.

 

  • Stage managers must have operational skill sets that are portable, flexible, and scalable—functionalities that allow them to maximize their work in a variety of arenas.

Michael J. Passaro talks about the Stage Management Program

The hybridization of these abilities – cultural caretaking and operational delivery – is essential to training stage management leaders with the skills to understand history and process, collaborate productively, and set the tone for inclusive work environments.

 

The coursework uses methodologies specific to commercial (Broadway) and not-for-profit theatrical stage management. This allows students to build best practices in many other areas: opera, dance, television, and corporate events, among others. Students are expected to develop a comprehensive knowledge of union regulations and theatre administration, as well as a working knowledge of various genres and theatrical aesthetics that enhance the creative development of a production.

 

The curricular arc provides a cross-platform focus (classroom theory and workplace practice) on how stage managers can actively contribute to changing the paradigms of racism and systemic injustice that exist within the theatre industry.  

 

Practical production experience is required in both academic and professional workplaces through departmental presentations and internships.  Individual field studies allow students to explore ancillary interests in other realms of entertainment management. The program gives students a myriad of opportunities to build alliances with subject-matter-experts who are working professionals at the highest industry levels.  

 

Despite the ever-changing advances in performance technology and communication systems, the craft of creating theatre is still very much rooted in face-to-face, in-the-moment, and interpersonal collaborations between artists. The Columbia SM Program celebrates this synergy with a practical, relevant, and compassionate curriculum to prepare the next generation of stage managers.

 

Notable Alumni

 

Morgan Beach ’19, Stage Manager, Disney Cruise Lines

Janelle Caso ’17 (Coal Country, Public Theater)

Kate Croasdale ’12 (Sea Wall/A Life)

Jessica Emmanus ’19 (Company, Broadway)

Christopher Maxwell ’19, St. Louis Rep

Kelley Moncreif ’21 (To Kill A Mockingbird, Broadway)

Alexis Nalbandian ’19 (MJ The Musical, Broadway)

Caroline Watters ’14 (Cirque Du Soleil, Worldwide)

Megan Webb ’19, Production Manager, George Mason University

Ada Zhang ’20 (Rent, Live 25th Anniversary Tour)

Rachel Zucker ’17 (Six The Musical, Broadway)

Stage Management News

Krystal Henninger ’15 to Release Instrumental EP ‘Gift of the Night Flurries’

Krystal Henninger ’15 to Release Instrumental EP ‘Gift of the Night Flurries’

December 13, 2021

Stage Management alumna Krystle Henninger '15 collaborated with Indorican Multicultural Dance Project for the upcoming release of her instrumental EP, Gift of the Night Flurries.

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Several Columbia Theatre Artists Featured on the Crew for 'Is There Still Sex In The City?'

Several Columbia Theatre Artists Featured on the Crew for 'Is There Still Sex In The City?'

December 8, 2021

Several Columbia University Theatre students and alumni are key crew members on Bushnell’s new show: Joel Glassman ’18, alumna Nicole Kramer '20, student Robbie Armstrong, and student Kyle Ronyecs.

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The Prince Fellowship Partners with The Theatre Leadership Project to Create New Producing Fellowship

The Prince Fellowship Partners with The Theatre Leadership Project to Create New Producing Fellowship

May 4, 2021

Each year, the Prince Fellowship provides one early career producer with the network, financial resources, and mentorship necessary for a career as a creative producer.

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