Assistant Stage Manager

TheatreSM88

Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Location
Illinois
What is your defination of an assistant stage manager, what do they do? What are some tasks that they take on?

Just let me know because I was apparently led to believe they do somthing else.
 

tenor_singer

Active Member
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Apr 1, 2004
Location
Orwell, Ohio
I am not saying that this is industry standard, but what I do at my school is have one stage manager with two assistants. The two assistants have two responsibilities:

1. They assist the stage manager with his/her daily tasks which include anything from checking the stage for safety issues, maintaining our attendance and cue books to preparing a rehearsal summary.

2. They are also each responsible for a crew that moves set pieces during the production. One is in charge of the SL crew and one is in charge of the SR crew. The stage manager is actually calling the show from his/her SM position (which is a table on SR by our back-up lightboard.
 

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Senior Team
Senior Team
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Nov 24, 2005
Location
Saratoga Springs, NY
An assistant stage manager can be alot of things, but usually this is it: They serve as a second set of eyes to take blocking and line notes durring rehearsals. They also are in charge of props for rehearsals, as well as communicating any specific prop needs to the design staff. In an equity house they also serve as the equity deputy (usually). Durring run they are in charge of all operations on the deck, and usually plan all scene changes and are in charge of the pack of the set backstage.
 

Van

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Jul 27, 2006
Location
Portland, Or.
In an equity house they also serve as the equity deputy (usually).
Actually Stage Managers are Specifically Prohibited from being the Equity Deputy. The Deputy is elected from within the cast and must be a memeber in good standing. Stage Managers and Assistant Stage Managers, are responsible for the strict adherence to the A.E.A. rules governing rehearsal, performance, etc. and are members of Equity, but since they are a "management" posistion Equity demands that there be a seperate "On -Site" Arbiter. Just a couple of other interesting rules about Equity SMs . They are not allowed to be the "pay-master" for a production. In other words the Producer can't hand them the Paychecks and say, " here hand these out to everyone." The second is Equity S.M.s are also not allowed to be required to be the person responsible for securing a facility. Basically when a show is done and the SM leaves there better be somebody else around to lock-up.


Check this thread to see some of the discussions that went on about the topic of S.M and ASM responsibilities before

http://www.controlbooth.com/forums/showthread.php?t=939&highlight=slave
 

TheatreSM88

Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Location
Illinois
I am in college right now and I am the ASM and well I asumed that I would be taking on the duties that you all mentioned. Well I am actually running crew. Me and one other ASM are suppoesed to do all set changes and everything. That is not what I assumed I would be doing. I don't mind it but I just was not expecting it. It is a very complex show for set changes. There are 17 scenes in Act 1 and 18 in Act 2.
 

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Senior Team
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I am in college right now and I am the ASM and well I asumed that I would be taking on the duties that you all mentioned. Well I am actually running crew. Me and one other ASM are suppoesed to do all set changes and everything. That is not what I assumed I would be doing. I don't mind it but I just was not expecting it. It is a very complex show for set changes. There are 17 scenes in Act 1 and 18 in Act 2.
Thats no fun, you should talk to someone about it. AEA contracts have a statement in them that basicly says that the ASM can not participate in scene changes if those scene changes conflict with the regular duties of the ASM. This is also the reason you do not see equity actors pushing around sets.
 

theaterscout

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Jan 27, 2005
Location
Rockton, IL
First of all, welcome! good to see that you were finally able to create an account. Second, you should fill us in on what your hardest change will be like.
 

TheatreSM88

Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Location
Illinois
One of the hardest changes, well there are many. But we are using rolling wagons, so they are going to have to be locked down no matter what and they have flats as walls as well. But there are two on stage, one is up stage right and the other is down stage left and they have to both come off and the other two have to move on, everything has to be unlocked and re locked on the new ones that are in, as well as putting coffins and a table on the main stage area. So that is just one of the scene changes to do with two people.
 

Sylak

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2006
Location
Alfred, NY
In my expierence, Asistant Stage manager is more or less a position for somebody to either learn of get out of your director's way, depending on who it is; Ive seen it both ways.
Last year in school, as ASM, i was given more or less free reign over fixing things but didn't call any shows, but i blockjed and took attendance. I endeed up runnig a projector from in our aspostes cove, but only after setting it up myself.
My friend, as Assistant Stage manager two years ago was put backstage blocking and calling out lines.
This year, i chose to take the position of "Student Technical Manager" in which i do much as i did as ASM, only this year im also running out newly aquired Control Board.
So, it really depedns on the person and on the producer/director
 

saxman0317

Active Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2006
Location
western NY
We do have a ASM technically, but you can consider our set manager the same thing. Our S/M will suppliment any large cue calling, but we tend to leave that to the area heads instead, maintain order, keep track of whats going on for a referance point, help actors that may need anyhting, and do any of the go between for any areas and the actors/dramatics director. The set manager on the other hand is in charge of the stage hands and reports to the S/M. He mostly handles scene changes and is the guy that wears the headset to take directions from the S/M as to what to tell his stage hands what to do. Hes also there so that if the S/M is in the house as we often are, hes the go between for the actor and S/m.