Areas of Study

  • Sarah Nearhoff (2018) calling "Legally Blonde"
    Sarah Nearhoff (2018) calling "Legally Blonde"
  • Bradley Zipser (2019) tech for "The Survival Project"
    Bradley Zipser (2019) tech for "The Survival Project"
  • Miriam Mendoza (2018) backstage for "Legally Blonde"
    Miriam Mendoza (2018) backstage for "Legally Blonde"


Students pursue the art and science of stage management via a theme for each quarter, seven (7) total courses required. These themes work in rotation and may vary slightly depending on the current student’s expressed needs and interests. Topics may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Essentials of Stage Management
  • Self Marketing
  • About Equity
  • Entertainment Law
  • Production Management
  • Psychology and Self Care for Stage Manager
  • Safety and Security in the Theatre. 
  • Directing for Stage Managers
  • Technology for Stage Managers
  • History, Nature, Structure of Performing Arts Organizations and Entertainment Companies
  • Calling the Perfect Show



Mentored by professional faculty and staff throughout every phase of production, each graduate stage management student will stage manage or assistant stage manage seven (7) productions as assigned, each growing in complexity throughout the course of the program. They organize and participate in a series of collaboration and production meetings for each production assignment. In addition to the supervision of performers, they interview and select assistants for each production as well as supervise running crews, which can number up to 60 students.



   (3) Foundations of Theater Course

   (3) Electives in Graduate or Upper Division Courses

   (2) Production Techniques Courses

   (1) Dramatic Literature Course



In your third year (or before), you will seek out a professional internship to build professional relationships and create potential job opportunities. The stage management program will help you secure the internship with letters of recommendation and provide input on finding an internship which best suits your career goals. Past internships have included working at: South Coast Repertory, DreamWorks, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Cirque du Soleil, Seattle Opera, and the LA Opera, among others. Discussions on this topic will develop further during your second year.



In your third year you will complete a thesis project of your own choosing, in consultation with and approval by the stage management faculty.

In addition to your thesis project, third year students serving as a production stage manager may be assigned a “thesis show”. At minimum your thesis show is the culmination of your time at UCI. It is also possible, but not guaranteed/required that this show may have additional opportunities, including unique support aspects (like a featured piece of technology), the possibility of serving as the basis of your thesis project, or a professional critique (similar to our Design Thesis Critiques).

The three thesis project options for UCI are:

      1. Assemble a professional production book on your assigned “thesis show”

      2. Create a stage management promotional/marketing package

      3. Complete a formal written thesis paper

Your chosen and completed thesis project will be presented to current stage management students and your thesis committee (3 members) in a formal one-hour presentation.