Course Catalogue

This is a listing of all the courses that we have offered over the past 5 years. Some courses are offered every year, while others are offered every 2 to 3 years. See the course Calendar for the courses being offered this year. The instructors listed are people who have taught the course in the past.

Assistant Stage Managing

A discussion of the various skills requried of an Assistant Stage Manager. How can they successfully work with the Stage Manager, cast, and crew? What is an efective strategy for planning your daily and weekly activities?

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Erin Fitzgerald (2012 - present), Barry Burns (2010), Michael Sinclair (2004 - 2009), Michelle Legasse (Winnipeg), Rachel Bland (Vancouver)

Blades Best Practices

A discussion of best practices for blades in the rehearsal hall.  Topics include storage, maintenance and an understanding.  Come and learn about stage combat from the inside out. We will discuss best practices for stage combat in rehearsal and performance as well as useful and easy ways to notate a fight.  Participants will get an opportunity to learn footwork, parries, and attacks in the movement component of the workshop. Please come dressed to move (comfortable clothing).

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Daniel Levinson

Calling a Show & Prompt Scripts

A Stage Manager must be able to incorporate, co-ordinate and call the various technical cues for a production. We will look at some of the techniques used to ensure that the lights, sound, special effects, flies, and many other important technical requirements are executed properly. Also includes an overview of the structure of a prompt script.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Lisa Russell (Calgary), Kristin McCollum (2017), Kate Porter (2015 - 2016), Kathryn Westoll (2006 - 2012), Janelle Rainville

Calling a Show Part 2: More Moving Parts

You have been calling shows but are ready for more of a challenge.  How does one incorporate automation, projections and follow spots?  This course explore how to increase your capacity for more complex cuing as well as how to work with a conductor and cue lights

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics,

Instructors: Chris Porter, Jeff Morris

Canadian Theatre Agreement

A study of the Stage Management clauses in the 2015 – 2018 Canadian Theatre Agreement using general concepts and specific examples. Every Stage Manager working on a CAEA production must be very familiar with this document in order to plan and maintain a production.  Copies of the current Agreement will be provided.

This course takes place at the Equity offices (Toronto conference only)

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Keith Davidson (2009 - present), Dustyn Wales (2016 - present), Lynn McQueen (Toronto 2011 - 2015 & On The Road), Ken Burns (2000 - 2010)

Canadian Theatre Agreement Session 2

An exploration of how to deal with being an employee. How do you figure out your daily hours?  How is your pay cheque calculated? What provincial employment rules apply in each province?

This course takes place at the Equity offices.

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics,

Instructors: Keith Davidson

Career Transitioning

How does one make a successful transition from a career in stage management to something else? How does one determine what that ‘something else’ is? When is the right time? What skills and experiences are transferrable to a new career? This practical workshop will provide a forum for transitioning stage mangers or those just thinking about the idea to discover tools, strategies, resources and information to help make the transition, whenever it happens, a planned event

Section: Your Future
Offered: Your Future, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Michael Code (Calgary), Amanda Hancox, Yvonne Rodney

Cirque du Soleil (Permanent Shows)

Cirque du Soleil creates unique, high-risk, and highly technical productions while working with artists from all over the world. The working environments, calling scripts, paperwork and emergency protocols differ greatly from traditional theatre. Come learn about and explore the world of Cirque du Soleil Stage Management for a permanent show (i.e., Las Vegas)!

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Caroline Watters

Cirque du Soleil: The Touring Experience

Cirque du Soleil creates unique, high-risk, and highly technical productions while working with artists from all over the world. The working environments, calling scripts, paperwork and emergency protocols differ greatly from traditional theatre. Come explore the world of arena touring with Cirque du Soleil Stage Management!

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Caroline Watters, Marisa Vest

Commercial Musicals

What skills and information are unique for the Stage Manager to know when working on a musical? How complicated are mega-musicals? A presentation of paperwork, prompt scripts and learning to call from a score and using cue-lights will be part of the session.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Roxanne Propkop Miller (Calgary), Maxwell T. Wilson (2016 & 2001), Chris Porter (2010 - 15), Jim Linvingstone (1996 - 2008)

Company Management

How do the Company Manager and Stage Manager relate to each other? What is a Company Manager responsible for? When there is no Company Manager which responsibilities are taken over by the Stage Manager? How often are Company Managers hired in Canada?

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions,

Instructors: Susan McNair Reid (Calgary), Barry Burns (2015), Tim Wisener (2011)

Conference Pass - Calgary 2017

The Conference Pass includes all 11 courses for a total of $300 ($27/course, actual value $385).

Two courses can be cancelled for a Conference Passholder before the 85% policy is initiated for any remaining cancelled courses.

Section: Conference Pass
Offered: Calgary 2017,

Conference Pass - On the Road

The Conference Pass includes all 11 courses for a total of $300 ($27/course, actual value $385).
Two courses can be cancelled for a Conference Passholder before the 85% policy is initiated for any remaining cancelled courses.

Section: Conference Pass
Offered: Calgary 2017,

Conference Pass - Toronto 2017

The Conference Pass includes all 22 courses for a total of $485 ($22/course, actual value $770).
Four courses can be cancelled for a Conference Passholder before the 85% policy is initiated for any remaining cancelled courses.

Section: Conference Pass
Offered: Toronto 2017,

Cruise Ships

Stage Management on Cruise Ships is best explained as a hybrid of Stage Management, Production Management, and Technical Direction.  Join us as we unravel the mystery.  Is sailing the sevens seas a lifestyle for you?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Christopher Buss, Craig Corbett (2012 only)

Dance

How do you stage manage a dance program? Where can you gain the experience? Where are the dance companies in Canada? The last two hours of this session will include a dancer which will allow the participants to gain first hand knowledge about blocking and calling a dance piece.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Janelle Rainville, Sharon DiGenova (1996 - 2011)

Designers

What is the relationship between the Designer and the Stage Manager? Does the discipline change the relationship, i.e., do costumes designers and lighting designers require the same things?  An in-depth discussion about the designer's expectations of the stage manager from prep week to tech week.

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions,

Instructors: Steve Lucas

Director

What is the relationship between the Director and the Stage Manager? An in-depth discussion about the Director's expectations of their stage manager from prep week to tech week, from time management to giving notes.

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions,

Instructors: Richard Rose (2015), Brendan Healey (2012), Ruth Smillie (2009)

Film

What skills can the stage manager use in the film world? How different is the film world? How does one enter into a film position? Is there an apprentice program?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Maria Popoff

Film Festivals

Often Film Festivals hire Stage Managers to facilitate the presentation of their screenings. What characteristics are they looking for in a Stage Manager? What are the key elements of the job description?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Sandra Hodnett (2006-2011 & 2017), Debbie Read (2014)

Firearms Best Practices

A discussion of best practices for firearms and prohibitive devices in the rehearsal hall.  Topics include storage and preparation of firearms, maintenance and an understanding of Canada's firearms law.  A demonstration of firearm use is included.

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics,

Instructors: Daniel Levinson

Foundations of Stage Combat

Come and learn about stage combat from the inside out. Over three hours we will explore the basics of unarmed combat: falls, rolls, throws, slaps, punches, grappling, and chokes. We will discuss best practices for stage combat in rehearsal and performance as well as useful and easy ways to notate a fight. Please come dressed to move (comfortable clothing).

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics,

Instructors: Daniel Levinson

Giving Notes / Prompting

An exploration into the art of giving notes to cast, crew, and production staff. The course will feature actors and a hands-on opportunity to evaluate different situations and challenges when giving notes to performers.  This skill is very important to the well-being of a production and its collaborators, and is often one of the most difficult techniques to be learned as a Stage Manager. The participants will also explore the art of Prompting.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Janelle Rainville, Darla Biccum (2010 - 2015 & 2017), Sheldon Davis (2010 - 2015 & 2017), Neil Foster (2016), Daniela Vlaskalic (2016)

How to be a Good Apprentice

The Apprentice Stage Manager position is a chance to learn the job of a Stage Manager and Assistant Stage Manager while working directly on a production, and gain credit towards joining Canadian Actors’ Equity Association.  What can you do to make the most of this learning experience?  What are the expectations of you?  What can you expect of the experience?

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Arwen MacDonell

Industrials

What skills cana Stage Manager apply to an Industrial? What is different about working on an industrial? How has audio visual equipment enhanced these presentations? What does the Assistant Stage Manager do? How do you find jobs on Industrials?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Arron Moses

Job Interviews & Contract Negotiations

Do you know how to prepare for an interview? What questions should you ask? How can you negotiate your salary? For what positions should you apply?

Section: Your Future
Offered: Your Future,

Instructors: Jeff Cummings, Genevieve Farrell (2014), Janelle Rainville (2010 - 2014), Winston Morgan (1996-2012)

Joining Equity

An introduction to Canadian Actors' Equity Association, including when and how to join the Association. We will examine the process of obtaining apprenticeship credits and engagement permits. We will also look at membership benefits and discuss the pros and cons of joining Equity.  

** Bring your resume to share/review with the group and to see if any work experience is eligible for retroactive credit.** 

This course takes place at the Equity offices and will include a tour of the facilities.

Section: Your Future
Offered: Your Future, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Lynn McQueen

Masterclass - Ballet Stage Management

The day will begin with a 3-hr class in the differences between text-based theatre and large scale ballets with National Ballet of Canada Stage Manager, Jeff Morris.  

In the afternoon, participants will be split into two groups.  During the matinee performance, half of the participants will watch the performance of “Cinderella”, choreographed by James Kudelka, from the audience while the other half will watch from the broadcast booth at the back of the orchestra while listening to the stage manager call the show.  At intermission the two groups will switch positions.  

The matinee will be followed by a backstage tour of the theatre and a ½ hour Q&A session with the stage management team. 

This is a one-of-a-kind opportunity – an in depth, hands-on learning experience that is hard to achieve in any other educational institution.

** ONLY 10 SPOTS AVAILABLE  **

Date:    Saturday, November 19th, 2016

Venue: Walter Carsen Centre (470 Queen's Quay West) = class

              Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts (145 Queen Street West) = performance

Cost:    $130 (includes price of the ticket to see the performance)

Schedule for the day:

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. - Session with Jeff Morris, Stage Manager

2:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. - Performance of "Cinderella" (1/2 watching from the house the other 1/2 listening to the stage manager call the show.  Switch places at intermission)

4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. - Backstage Tour with Lil Stilwell, Stage Manager

5:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. - Post-Performance Questions with Stage Management team backstage in the production office

Section: Masterclass
Offered: Masterclass, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Jeff Morris

Masterclass - Commercial Musicals Stage Management

The first day will be held at Ryerson Theatre School where Mirvish Production Stage Manager, Erin Fitzgerald. will teach a 4-hour class in the differences between text-based theatre and commercial musicals.  The second day the group of participants will be split in half.  During the matinee half of the participants will receive a tour of the backstage and watch the preset.   During the performance of "Kinky Boots" they will watch the performance from various monitors backstage while listening to the show being called on headset.  The 2nd group will sit in the audience and enjoy the show as an audience member.  After dinner the two groups will switch positions.  The day will be capped off by a 1/2 hour Q&A session with the Stage Management team.

Cost:   $130 (includes ticket for the May 11th performance)

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

Class: 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Ryerson Theatre School,
44 Gerrard Street East, 2nd floor boardroom,
Toronto 

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016

Royal Alexandra Theatre,
260 King Street West

Tour: 1 p.m. (for those listening in on headset)

Show: 2:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Tour: 7 p.m. (for those listening in on headset)

Show: 8:00 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.

Q & A: 10:30 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.

Section: Masterclass
Offered: Masterclass, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Erin Fitzgerald (2009 & 2016), Chris Porter (2009)

Masterclass - Opera Stage Management

The first day will start with a 4-hour class with Canadian Opera Company’s Stage Manager, Lil Stilwell. That evening,  participants will watch a performance of an opera. Two days later, there will be a backstage tour of the theatre led by the Assistant Stage Managers. That evening, participants will watch the performance from the broadcast booth while listening to the show being called on headset. The evening will be capped off by a 1/2 hour Q&A session with the Stage Management team.

Cost:   $120 (includes $25 ticket for the May 18th performance)

Part 1

Class: 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts,
Stage Door (northwest corner of Richmond & York)

Show: 7:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.

Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts
145 Queen Street West

Part 2 

Tour: 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Show: 2:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Q & A: 4:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts
145 Queen Street West

Section: Masterclass
Offered: Masterclass,

Instructors: Lil Stilwell

NEWest Stuff in the CTA

Think you know the CTA inside and out?  With this latest negotiation there have been quite a few changes that affect stage managers.  Come and learn all the new ins and outs.

This course takes place at the Equity offices

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Keith Davidson, Dustyn Wales

Notation / Forms / Prep Week

Are you searching for the best type of Scene/Character Breakdown?  Want to know how to notate the movement of a 10-member chorus with no spoken text? This course covers many ways Stage Managers can organize, document and communicate information.  The session includes an overview of the many tasks and duties required of stage management during Prep Week.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Sarah Miller (2017), Janelle Rainville (On the Road, Toronto 2014 & 2015), Merissa Tordjman (Montreal & Toronto 2012 & 2016), Maria Costa (2004 - 2011)

Opera

What skills and information are unique for the Stage Manager to know when working on an opera? A presentation of paperwork, prompt scripts, and learning to call from a score will be a part of the session.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Susan Monis

Problem Solving

How do you handle problems? Are there ways to improve your problem-handling skills that could better support your job as SM? This session explores how good information gathering supports clear decision making.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Peter Fleming

Producer

What is a producer and how does a stage manager work with this person during the production process.  An in-depth discussion about the producer’s expectations of the stage manager from prep week to tech week.

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Derrick Chua

Production Manager

What is the relationship between the Stage Manager and the Production Manager? How can the Stage Manager improve this bond? When does a Stage Manager need to perform production management duties and what are they?

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Cheryl Hoover (Calgary), Rick Banville (2015 - present), Jonathan Rondeau (Montreal), Larry Isacoff (Winnipeg), Jeff Cummings (2007-2009)

Production Stage Manager

How does a Production Stage Manager supervise a company of Stage Managers? How do they balance this job while stage managing a production in the same season? What is it like working in repertory theatre?

Section: Positions
Offered: Positions,

Instructors: The. John Gray, Judy Farthing (2008-2010)

Props

A look into the world of prop buying and building. How can a Stage Manager successfully communicate with the Properties Department? What are the best ways to provide info from rehearsal? What expectations are realistic regarding having props in rehearsal? Who is responsible for running props & perishables?

Section: Departments
Offered: Departments,

Instructors: Fina MacDonell

Reading Music

Whether you have a background of musical training or not, this course is a quick guide to following a musical score, and integrating cues for the Stage Manager.  The ability to follow a musical score is an important skill with many applications in dance, musical theatre and opera.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Bonni Baynton (Calgary), Jeff Morris (2014 - present), Susan Monis (1996-2012)

Reading plans / Taping a Floor

A guide for Stage Managers to interpret ground plans and scale drawings of scenery and stages.  Tips on the use of a scale ruler to translate drawings into an accurately marked floor for rehearsals, as well as a discussion of how best to orient a rehearsal space.  Please bring a 25' to 50' tape measure and an Architect's (imperial) scale ruler if you own them.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Alexis Buset (2011 - present), Dave Surette (Montreal), Jeff Scollon (2008)

Repertory Theatre: The Stratford Model

Repertory can be defined at two or more productions with a rotating performance schedule, using a shared company of performers, in one or more venues.  The Stratford Festival is one of the largest repertory companies in North America; Stage Manager Ann Stuart will explore and illustrate some of the special requirements and challenges a Stage Manager will encounter when working in repertory.  Systems such as Primary/Secondary/Tertiary rehearsal scheduling will be discussed, as well as examples of other paperwork and prompt books.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Ann Stuart

Resumes

What should be in your cover letter and on your resumé? How should your resumé be organized? How does one search for a job? Please bring a copy of your current resumé and sample cover letter with you to the class.

Section: Your Future
Offered: Your Future, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Ray Salverda (2014 - present), Pat Bradley (1997 - 2012), Chuck Childs (Montreal)

Safety

A study of the role of the Stage Manager in anticipating, identifying and resolving health and safety concerns during rehearsals and the run of a production.  The safety sections in the Canadian Theatre Agreement guide the discussion; resources such as the Safety Guidelines for the Live Performance Industry in Ontario will also be referenced.

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Janet Sellery, Dawn Brennan (Vancouver, Toronto 2011 - 2012), Janet Kennedy (Montreal)

Scheduling and Planning

A discussion and practical application of how production elements affect day-to-day and week-to-week scheduling and planning from Prep Week through Opening. What are the myriad of considerations to prioritize when devising a rehearsal schedule and a production schedule?

Section: Basic Skills
Offered: Basic Skills, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Andrew North (Calgary), Janelle Rainville (2014 - present), Winston Morgan (1996 - 2012)

Set

A look into the world of set construction and reading plans. How can a Stage Manager successfully communicate with carpenters? What are the best ways to provide info from rehearsal? What expectations can you have about having elements in rehearsal to the first time onstage?

Section: Departments
Offered: Departments,

Instructors: Will Sutton

Special Events

An exploration of the specific knowledge required of a Stage Manager when working on special events. What should one be expected to do when working on large events outside the theatre world? Why are these events different from industrial presentations?  Why are stage managers uniquely qualified to succeed in this field?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Jennifer Stein

Summer Stock

What skills and information are unique for the stage manager to know when working in the condensed schedule of summer stock theatre? How do Summer stock musicals differ from commercial mega-musicals? Where do you find a job in summer stock? A presentation of paperwork, schedules & prompt scripts.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Robert Harding

Tax Preparation for Stage Managers

Discover how to fill out your income tax forms as an Equity Stage Manager.  This workshop will explore some tax basics that everyone should know including the impacts of married or common law status, RRSPs, CPP and EI.  We will also examine the differences between being employed or self-employed.

Section: Your Future
Offered: Your Future,

Instructors: Rose Brow (Calgary, Ken Burns (Toronto)

Television

Transferring theatrical skills to the world of Television.  The Stage Manager vs Floor Manager.  Interested in what possibilities exist for a theatrically trained individual in television, then you shouldn’t miss this course.

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Aidan Cosgrave

Theatre for Young Audiences

Explore the intricacies of school touring. Often Stage Managers begin their careers taking a young audience production on the road. What are the challenges and rewards? What is different from stage managing a main stage production?

Section: Genres
Offered: Genres,

Instructors: Heather Landon (2015), Pablo Felices Luna (1998 - 2012)

Training Apprentices

As an Assistant Stage Manager or Stage Manager are you prepared to train your Apprentice? This course will examine what expectations an Apprentice should have of a Stage Manager as well as what reasonable expectations a Stage Manager should have of an Apprentice. A discussion about how to deal with different skill levels and personalities as well as how to give feedback in a timely and helpful manner.

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Lisa Russell (2017), Nancy Dryden (2012)

Unions

How does a stage manager juggle the rules of different organizations so that the production runs smoothly? What do you need to understand about working with I.A.T.S.E., ADC, and AF of M? What approaches are productive for a well-rounded production experience?

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics,

Instructors: Alistair Hepburn

Wardrobe & Wigs

A look into the world of the wardrobe and wig departments. How can a Stage Manager successfully communicate with these departments? What are the best ways ot provide information from rehearsals? How can you plan and schedule events such as costume and wig fittings and quick changes?

Section: Departments
Offered: Departments, Toronto 2016,

Instructors: Sharon Secord (2014 & 2016), Alex Gilbert (2011 conference)

Working in a Digital World

Does the idea of a “paperless prompt script” make your head spin?  Are you ready to enter the 21st century but have no idea how to make technology work for you as opposed to against you?  This course is a discussion about tip, tricks and best practices for working in a digital world.  The trees will thank you.

Section: Advanced Basics
Offered: Advanced Basics, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Robert Harding

Working with QLab

Stage Managers are often required to run the sound or video cues for a show or rehearsal.  The most popular software for this is QLab.  Learn the basics of QLab programming for both sound and video from designers, Beth Kates and Ben Chaisson. 

  ** Participants need to supply their own Mac lap top and will be sent instructions on how to download the free software in order to explore and play in the session.

Section: Departments
Offered: Departments, Toronto 2017,

Instructors: Beth Kates, Ben Chaisson