National Stage Management Conference



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2013 Keynote speaker: Jodi Myers   'Once a stage manager ...'

Jodi's career began in stage management and progressed through marketing to Deputy Director of Touring for the Arts Council of Great Britain, before becoming Director of Warwick Arts Centre and Director of Performing Arts at the South Bank Centre. Since 2005 she has worked as an independent consultant across the arts. She also works as a coach and mentor, including with the Stage Management Association, and occasionally as a consultant executive theatre producer. Jodi is currently a governor of The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, and a board member of Propeller Theatre Company and of a small literary publication. She is independent chair of the National Dance Network and an Assessor for Arts Council England. Jodi Myers Projects

Read the BAPAM Slides from the Stress and Mental Health for SM’s session HERE  (POWERPOINT SLIDES)

Read the slides from the National Stage Management Census session HERE (POWERPOINT SLIDES)

BSL signers were at the Stage Management Conference this year: Glossary of BSL techical theatre terms

 The National Stage Management Conference moves to the Tricycle Theatre on Sunday 17 March 2013:

building on the success of last year's event with a bigger venue and a bigger and better conference.

The programme will include breakout sessions on: ‘Stress and mental health for SM's’,’ Equity contracts’, ’The site-specific book’, and ‘Work/life balance and job sharing’, plus a wide ranging panel debate on the ‘Future of stage management’. With additional informative sessions and mini-surgeries from RC-Annie, Stage Electrics, Bambridge Accountants and TAP - the 2013 Conference has lots on offer for all stage management and backstage crew.

Registration 10.30-11.30. Conference 11.00-18.15.
Lunch and refreshments are included, and the delegate rates offer excellent value for an informative and inspiring day with plenty of networking opportunities, including a closing drinks reception.

Panel Debate: Stage Management in 2023?
Speakers: Equity Assistant General Secretary, Stephen Spence, Theatre Director Mark Babych, Welsh National Theatre PM David Evans and Stage Manager Kevin Mullery
Theatre styles are changing, more stage management than ever are fulfilling multiple roles, and the technology that we all use continues to evolve very fast.  We look at the future of the work we do and some hot questions that we will all need to address in the next ten years.  How can we all make sure that we have the skills needed to compete?

After the Panel Debate breakout sessions below will run in three blocks during the day.
In each block there will be a choice of three or four sessions some of which will be repeated in a later block.

A: Are life and stage management compatible?
Can you work as an SM and look after children?  Can, and should, we share our jobs? Is it crazy to expect to have a full time family and personal life and an SM job? We know that SM'ing involves 'anti-social' hours, but are our employers doing enough to help: how much is it reasonable to expect any employee in 2013 to give up for their job?  A parent working in stage management Ruth Morgan, CSM, Birmingham Rep and Emma Rees, Executive Director, Unlimited Theatre - a theatre employer and parent - will lead the discussion about whether a better work/life balance is possible whilst working in stage management. A lively debate is sure to follow, so don't miss your chance to get involved.

B: RC-Annie: Swords, safety and cleanliness:
The energetic ‘guns and blood’ expert Ruth Cooper-Brown will run a breakout session on “swords, safety and cleanliness: dramatic violence in theatre”.  Ever popular RC-Annie courses always get great feedback from SM's. These sessions are sure to be very popular and lively and a great taster for the fuller training courses!

C: Out of the Black Box: The site specific book:
Experienced DSM Cassie Broom and stage manager Helen Reynolds lead us through the complexities and additional challenges of running a book in a site specific or promenade performance with practical examples and a Q&A. This session will is a follow up to the successful and popular 'complex book' session last year.

D: The SM Desk and the technical side of SM’ing:
Stage Electrics Richard Thompson brings us up to date with the latest portable SM desks and comms, and seek your views on the next steps for stage management technology- a really great session to learn more about stage technology from the experts, and share new ideas affecting show callers and all stage management.

E: Getting to know Equity Contracts:
Experts from Equity Virginia Wilde & Peter Fleming alongside SMA Board Member Adam Burns guide delegates through the complexities of the standard contracts most of us work under, and hear your views on what the agreements should contain. Learn about your contracts and rights and have your say about future Equity contracts.

F: Stress and Mental Health for SM’s:
Two experts from BAPAM (The British Association for Performing Arts Medicine) Deborah Charnock and Dr Carol Chapman - a leading clinical psychologist who works closely with performing arts medicine - will guide us along the path to stress free working and a healthy career, offer advice and answer questions. Deborah and Dr Carol are keen to hear your strategies and experiences of coping with stress and tension, and you will learn where you can get free help and advice for colleagues or yourself as well. Don't miss this really useful session!   

Read the BAPAM Slides from the Stress and Mental Health for SM’s session HERE 

G: Debate the results of the 2013 National Stage Management Census:
60% of responding stage management say that they are fulfilling more than one role in their jobs (worryingly 50% of those said they had received no extra pay for the added responsibilities). Ken Bennett-Hunter and SMA Exec Director (and census author) Andy Rowley will present the results and ask for your opinions on what we should do now to get your message across. The SMA will make sure that all of the results and feedback become well known and widely distributed in the industry.

Read the slides from the National Stage Management Census session HERE