Spark the Curiosity: Stage or Screen Careers
If you have a child interested in a career in theatre or television/movies, help them learn about all the jobs surrounding the production. What may start as a front stage interest, may convert to other sides of the business too. Local TV stations are often in high demand for tours to see how the local news is produced. That can work in your favor at times, because they know how to give tours. Organizing a career day outing or a group like boy scouts, girl scouts, summer camps, can be a good way to get the foot in the door.
Many cities have community theatres and bigger cities have many live theatres. Getting a tour and sitting back stage for a rehearsal can be very educational. The closer to a production date, the more types of behind-the-scene workers are likely to be present. There are many similarities in duties for the people creating a production in the theatre and TV or movies. So much of the learning can transfer across businesses.
The trick is to ask lots of questions. You may find in smaller theatres the workers are volunteers, doing these jobs for their passion of the work and being a part of the production. Some volunteers may be learning the crafts needed to put on a play, so that they can turn it into a career. Others will be employees or paid contractors of the production.
Many of these workers may have other jobs, not related to their work in the theatre. Ask about those jobs and why the person is willing to work two jobs.
Learning about the different jobs needed to put on a production will even help your child if they believe they want to be an actor or a reporter, in a “center stage” role. Understanding the jobs around you helps you do your job better. It can also build an appreciation for what it takes to create a production. The graciousness an actor shows to their co-workers when they appreciate their role, can go a very long way in bolstering one’s career. You never know where the next referral will come from.
Explore and enjoy.
Please share your stories or questions about jobs in the arts.