We are always on the look out for people to help back stage or in other areas of the managing the theatre. To stage a production a large number of volunteer helpers are needed for various roles. The following are all roles that members can get involved in.
Help is needed in the following areas.
Stage Manager (SM)
The stage manager is responsible for organising the building of the set for a production, with a hands on approach. The director and stage manager will liaise as to the set design and then it is all steam ahead! There is generally 2-3 weeks to build a set. The stage manager is needed for the dress rehearsals as well as the production run of a play. During the run, the SM is responsible for making sure all actors are in place before the start of each act, co-ordinating with front of house and technical box with this information (there is a system in place to do this) and making sure that any tasks such as operating the curtain either up or down, moving parts of the set, assisting with props changes etc. are done.
The stage manager is also required to help ‘strike’ the set when the production finishes. This all may seem daunting, but gives an opportunity to really make a production a success.
This is done under the supervision of the stage manager. As well as physically putting up a set using flats (this provides the walls of a set), we also need people who would be willing to help with painting the set, building specific props (especially with the pantomime!) putting suitable flooring down, help the props team if pictures etc. need to be hung- in fact, any thing that will help. There is a lot of scope for people who want to help out in a practical way.
A prompt is needed for most plays during the season except for the Pantomime. The prompt helps the director and actors by following the lines in the script and prompting if needed. A prompt is needed during the rehearsal period once the actors have put down their scripts, usually half way through the rehearsal period. They are also needed for every night during the run of the show. At the end of the production it is the responsibility of the prompt to collect in all the scripts and return them to the library.
Most plays need a number of props for the run. The role of props organiser involves liaising with the director about which props are needed. Gathering or buying props needed ready for the start of the run. The props person also needs to be on hand during the run of the play to make sure everything is in place and in working order for the start of each show. During the play the props may need to be moved. At the end of the run props need to cleared from the set and returned to the props cupboard. We have a props room which is full of all sorts of interesting things, half the fun can be having a good rummage in this as well as thinking of other places to find elusive props!
The wardrobe department at the Royalty has recently undergone a massive reorganization and there is still work to be done. The work involved would be two fold, firstly there will be the general house keeping, cataloguing and cleaning of the extensive collection of costumes in wardrobe. Secondly we are responsible for providing costumes for the shows in production. This involves taking measurements, researching period and style and finding and fitting the actors. Wardrobe helpers are need during the run of a production to help with costume changes and emergency mending.