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Theater

What can I do with this major?

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Area

Employer


Performing

 
  • Stage
  • Television
  • Radio
  • Motion Picture
  • Video
  • Community theaters
  • Regional theaters
  • Commercial theaters
  • Summer stock theaters
  • Dinner theaters
  • Children's theaters
  • Repertory companies
  • University theater groups
  • Touring companies
  • Industrial shows
  • Show groups
  • Amusement and theme parks
  • Television/film studios
  • Radio stations
  • Nightclubs
  • Cabarets
  • Cruise lines
  • Acting conservatories
  • Public or community programs

Directing

 
  • Direction
  • Technical Direction
  • Casting
  • Set Design
  • Stage Management
  • Support Staff
  • Theaters of varying types
  • Television and motion picture studios
  • Video production companies
  • Other performance venues

Behind the Scenes

 
  • Stage Management
  • Stage Director
  • Set Design/Construction
  • Property Design
  • Lighting Design
  • Sound Design
  • Costume Design
  • Camera Operation
  • Hair/Make-up
  • Special Effects
  • Wardrobe
  • Prop Management
  • Broadcast Technology
  • Riggers
  • Electricians
  • Carpenter/Scenic Artist
  • Community theaters
  • Regional theaters
  • Commercial theaters
  • Summer stock theaters
  • Dinner theaters
  • Children's theaters
  • Repertory companies
  • University theater groups
  • Touring companies
  • Industrial shows
  • Show groups
  • Amusement and theme parks
  • Television/film studios
  • Radio stations
  • Nightclubs
  • Cabarets
  • Cruise lines
  • Acting conservatories
  • Public or community programs

Writing

 
  • Scriptwriting
  • Playwriting
  • Screenwriting
  • Journalism
  • Publicity (Press Agents)
  • Research
  • Theaters
  • Television/film studios
  • Television stations
  • Radio stations
  • Video production companies
  • Magazines
  • Newspapers
  • Freelance

Business

 
  • Producing
  • Management
  • Agents
  • Marketing and Advertising
  • Fundraising and Development
  • Coordination of Volunteers
  • Administration of Arts Programs
  • Box Office Sales
  • Promotions
  • Theaters
  • Arts councils
  • Television/film studios
  • Broadway
  • Road company productions
  • Regional theaters
  • Stock productions
  • Dinner theaters
  • Cabarets

Education

 
  • Private Instruction
  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Public and private schools, K-12
  • Colleges and universities
  • Performing arts centers
  • Various types of theater
  • Freelance

General Information and Strategies

  • Complete an internship or an apprenticeship with a local theater. Participate in summer stock. Gain as much experience as possible.
  • Network: Talk with people working in the field to find out about jobs and opportunities. Join professional groups to make contacts.
  • Read newspapers and periodicals related to the theater to keep up with new developments. Read the "trades"--magazines and newspapers that report events in the entertainment industry. Read the "Theater" section of daily newspapers to find out about upcoming productions.
  • Join a relevant union or guild to be eligible for work assignments.
  • Get your foot in the door and get involved with productions any way you can. Be prepared to do various tasks assigned by stage managers or producers.
  • Volunteer with fundraising efforts for the arts.
  • Be aware of scams. Check out the legitimacy of agencies and companies before paying any fees.
  • Be prepared to move to a metropolitan area where more opportunities exist.
  • A career in the arts takes patience, dedication, and luck!
  • Have a back-up plan. Be aware that actors and directors may face frequent and long periods of unemployment. Develop skills that qualify you for other jobs while you wait for opportunities. Consider pairing theater with another career interest or major to open up more career possibilities.
  • Theater helps students develop verbal and written communication, public speaking, and teamwork skills. These transferable skills are valued by many types of employers. In particular, positions in sales, marketing, management, and public relations may be open to students with theater degrees.
  • There are many ways to be involved in theater arts while working in another career field if you choose not to pursue theater as your way to make a living.