There is an actor on the stage of a West End musical. They wear a costume designed by one person, stitched by someone else and fitted by a third. Their make up, wig and microphone were fitted by three separate people. Their movements were directed by one person, their dance routine by another, their accent coached by a third, and their words written by a fourth. These words were set to music by someone completely different, and this music was directed by yet another person. They were cast by a separate team, their contract was signed by someone completely different, and their headshot taken by someone else.

The set has been designed by someone, made by someone else, and operated on the night by someone else. The lights have been designed by someone, rigged by someone else, and operated on the night by someone else.

The posters were designed by someone in line with someone else’s instructions, printed by someone, and put up around the city by someone else. The five star reviews on the poster were written by someone who’d been sent to see the show by someone else, having been invited by someone from the theatre. The tickets were sold by someone, printed by someone else, and ripped by a third person on the door.

The applause comes from someone, who will tell someone else that they really have to see this show with this person in it.

All of these somebodies are professionals, and all of these jobs are potential career paths for entry level graduates. It strikes me that in fringe theatre, most of these jobs will be done by one or two people – people who decide they want to be a ‘director’ or a ‘producer’ without really knowing what that entails.

I want to use this weekly blog to address a number of these varied theatrical careers that exist away from the beaten path.  I aim to paint a picture of the industry as a whole; a sample of job opportunities that might otherwise be ambiguous, and an account of their immediate effect on the art.  Through interviews with industry professionals and my own speculative musings, I intend to deal with these specific jobs in turn, and maybe even find a career path for myself in the process…

Image by Vladimir Pletenev