21M.606 | Spring 2009 | Undergraduate

Introduction to Stagecraft


Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Course Objectives

  • Develop skills used by theatre technicians and craftspeople in areas of scenery, costume, lighting and sound.
  • Understand the process of creating a theatrical production as it goes from page to stage.
  • Learn how to use theatrical tools and materials responsibly and in accordance with industry safety guidelines.

Attendance Policy

Stagecraft packs a lot of information into one semester and it is important that you attend every class. You may miss two classes per semester with no explanation. If you miss a third class we will require a letter from one of the deans/doctors/professors explaining the reason for your absence. For each unexcused absence after the first 2 your grade will drop one letter. You are responsible for making up any missed work for any missed class.

Text and Materials

The Back Stage Hand Book will be ordered in class. You will be asked to purchase some additional art/craft materials during the semester. (See materials hand out)

Carter, Paul, and George Chiang. Backstage Handbook: An Illustrated Almanac of Technical Information. Louisville, KY: Broadway Press, 1994. ISBN: 9780911747393.

Midterm Presentation

At Midterm, you will give a 3-minute presentation defining the details of your final project. This presentation will address what your project is, the challenges you will face and potential solutions, materials needed, your project timeline, and visual support and plans.

Final Project

Design and construct a major costume, property, scenic or furniture item. This will be worth one quarter of the course grade and will be presented for the final exam. Your projects will be graded on quality of execution and thoroughness of supporting materials. Since we would like to see you take risks with these projects, the difficulty of the project and how much you pushed yourself outside your comfort level will be taken into consideration. However, do not expect these factors to excuse ineffective time management, incomplete projects, and/or poor workmanship.

Production Work/Lab Hours (PDF)

A total of 24 hours: six hours in each of the three shops and an additional six in a shop of the student’s choice. These hours are required for successful completion of the course, and are worth one quarter of the final grade.

Grade Calculation

Production hours 25%
Final project 25%
Midterm paper/presentation 10%

Class work (detailed below):

Quizzes - 20%
Pants - 5%
Widget/tools - 5%
Paint project - 5%
Participation - 5%


Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2009
Learning Resource Types
Activity Assignments with Examples