THIS SEASON - Hired!
Director: Jake Venet, Ruarí Morrison (asst.)
Music Director: Dylan Kaufman
Choreographer: Erin Hamilton, Alexia Vieira (asst.)
Stage Manager: Nicole Boulanger, Grace Sherwood (asst.)
Dramaturg/Dialect Coach: John H. Llewellyn, Alison Butts (asst.)
Director: Terrance Peters
Stage Manager: Brigid Hern & Emily Formato, Liz Zabat (asst.)
Dramaturg: Tyler DiBenedetto, Sophie Korpics (asst.)
Prior to auditions
The Director creates a vision for the production of the show. They then choose the selections for auditions (along with the Musical Director for the musical).
The Director is a member of the casting board, specifically focusing on show benefit. The Director works with the rest of the casting board over the course of auditions to cast the show.
During rehearsal process
The Director attends Artistic Team meetings regularly and communicates with A Team members to ensure the design elements are consistent with the vision throughout the process. The Director also makes the weekly schedule with the rehearsal team, prepares blocking and works with actors to stage the play, and is a constant presence at rehearsals. The Director also writes a note for the program that offers clarification about the vision and/or provides other information they feel the audience should know.
During Tech week
The Director is present for all of tech week, giving the actors notes on the run-throughs. The Director also continues to work with the Artistic team to ensure all elements of the production come together within the vision.
Music Director (MUSICAL ONLY)
Prior to auditions
The Music Director works closely with the Director to choose the vocal selections for auditions (and either plays piano or finds an audition pianist)
The Music Director is a member of the casting board, focusing on vocal/musical ability as well as on show benefit. The Music Director works with the rest of the casting board over the course of auditions to cast the musical.
During rehearsal process
The Music Director teaches the show's music to the cast (*they are also either responsible for acting as rehearsal pianist in rehearsals or for finding a rehearsal pianist*). Each music rehearsal, they conduct vocal warm-ups with the cast and work help the cast sing the music correctly and healthily. They also help the Director to make the weekly schedule with the rehearsal team. The Music Director is also responsible for gathering and organizing the musical's pit band. They must recruit the appropriate musicians, organize pit rehearsals, and conduct the pit band during the performance. The Music Director also is responsible for organizing a "Sitzprobe", the first cast-pit rehearsal which integrates the band in with the singers.
During Tech week
The Music Director is present for all of tech week, conducting vocal warm-ups and giving the actors vocal notes on the run-throughs. The Music Director also conducts the pit band throughout the week and performances, giving them notes for improvement as well.
The Stage Manager’s primary responsibility is to keep things organized and the actors on task. Early in the process, the Stage Manager makes a contact sheet with the information of everyone involved (typically the cast, rehearsal team, and possibly E-Board) and distribute it so that everyone can get in touch with each other. They also make sure everyone is at rehearsal on time, and contact those who aren’t (additionally, keeping track of those who are habitually late and decide, with the director and producer, when it reaches the point where it is a problem that needs to be addressed). The SM works with the Director (as well as the choreographer, music director, and vocal director if the musical) to create the rehearsal schedule each week. They keep track of the actor’s conflicts and make sure the rehearsal schedule doesn’t conflict with them.
Once the cast is off-book, the Stage Manager is on book for them, giving them their lines when they call for them and keeping notes on lines that they miss or mess up. They also keep track of blocking once it is finalized. The Stage Manager is also in charge of the ASMs (Assistant Stage Managers). They need to be sure to find a satisfying balance between utilizing the ASMs to help get things done and ensuring they are learning the various components of the Stage Management position.
During tech week
The Stage Manager works with the Tech Director to make sure that time is used efficiently for the entirety of the week. At the beginning of tech week, the Stage Manager decides on cue placement with the Lighting and Sound Designers and the Director (if necessary). The SM also needs to time the rehearsals to yield an accurate run time for the show. During run-throughs and performances, they are on headset with the ASMs and light/sound board operators. The Stage Manager calls lighting/sound cues, transitions, and communicates with the ASMs to ensure the actors and stage are ready at all times.
Choreographer (MUSICAL ONLY)
The role of the Choreographer is to create dance and movement sequences for the musical determined by the Director. The Choreographer incorporates the Director’s artistic vision for the show into the dance and closely collaborates with the Director to ensure that the dance is consistent with the style, themes, and vision of the show.
The Choreographer comes to the audition prepared with a short dance in the style of the show to teach to the auditioners, typically happening at callbacks. This should reflect the average level of difficulty required of the cast of the show. The choreographer may choose to present another dance, or multiple dances- one for males and one for females; or only a dance for a specific character, if this suits the show and the casting board feels it is necessary and beneficial to casting. In some cases the choreographer and artistic director may decide that a dance portion is not necessary at callbacks at all.
During all portions of auditions, the Choreographer takes notes. Particularly during the dance portion, the Choreographer looks for those who are able to learn the style of dance required in the show. The Choreographer works together with the rest of the casting board to cast the show.
The Choreographer is expected to work with the Rehearsal team prior to the start of each week to plan the rehearsal schedule, and is expected to arrive on time to each rehearsal they are conducting. The Choreographer is expected to prepare the dance they are scheduled to teach before the rehearsal. The choreographer needs to give notes to the cast after rehearsals/run-throughs about corrections and improvements. The Choreographer should lead a warm-up and stretch for the cast at the start of each dance rehearsal and prior to each run-through. The Choreographer should maintain a dialogue with the Vocal Director and be aware of the vocal requirements to choreograph accordingly. The Choreographer must communicate with the Set Designer and be aware of the set design and stage layout and arrange all dances accordingly.
The Choreographer should lead a stretch and warm-up for the cast prior to each tech rehearsal which requires dancing. They need to communicate with the Costume Designer and, if necessary, the Hair Designer to ensure the costumes and hair styles accommodate dance requirements in the production. During tech week, the Choreographer is responsible for re-staging the actors on stage if need be after seeing the performance space and set/scenic elements.
They should be present for each tech rehearsal to give notes to the actors and be available to other A-team members (such as Lighting Designer who may have questions about spacing, etc.).
The Dramaturg delves deeply into the text of the play, and serves as a resource for each and every production team in terms of context and interpretations of the text.
The Dramaturg researches the historical and cultural elements of the play and presents this research to the cast/crew (ie. oral presentation, online database, etc.). The Dramaturg also maintains a dialogue (esp. with the Director), answering questions and helping to decipher the entirety of the written play. The Dramaturg should be a regular presence at rehearsals in order to address questions arising over the course of the process. The Dramaturg should work tirelessly to help production company and the audience better understand the show. This can be done through program notes, talk-backs, online content, etc. A job for curious minds, this position is a valuable resource for both the cast/crew of UMTG shows and is customizable - the kind of content gathered/created depends on the creativity and passions of the Dramaturg.