As Company Manager for Hoosier Shakes, my prep time has consisted of organizing documents, creating documents, reading and writing mass emails, and becoming familiar with the scripts and directors’ concepts. Anything created and sent out is archived by me, so we can draw on it when needed. My prep time has also consisted of creating my kit, a helpful little collection of pencils, band-aids, gaff tape, you name it! A stage manager kit is like Mary Poppins’ carpetbag filled with theatrical goodies.
While I can physically show you my prompt book I’m creating (aka a massive binder that holds anything and everything needed for us to run the show) or stage manager kit, the preparation that I find the most important for a Company Manager to do is to establish relationship and communication with everyone in the cast and crew. One of the things I love about Hoosier Shakes is that it values the relationships it has with its company members and the community. By taking the time now to establish a relationship with the cast and crew, I hope it shows I value them as a person and artist. I hope it creates a space where they feel safe and able to create. So, yes, I send a lot of emails. I’m creating a bunch of documents. But when I stay on top of sending out materials when needed, staying in touch, and answering questions, I want to create a relationship where people feel safe, prepared, and willing to trust. It takes a lot of trust to put up a show. I trust the cast, crew, and producers with the story; I aim to prove that they can share their trust in me. A trusting and openly communicative relationship is what I am trying to build before we even meet. I’m so excited and honored to work with everyone, and I hope they’re ready to explore and play. If you need me, I’m just an email away!
By: Gloria Billinglsey