How to become a stage manager: Pete's story

Meet Pete and find out more about life as a stage manager. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

I think if you really want do something like that, like really wan't to do it, you just do it and you just hope that the opportunities come.

  • Pete’s main job is as a touring musician. He plays drums and other instruments for artists. His background as a musician opened up opportunities for him in stage management. As he knows the stage from a performance point of view, he was asked to stage manage and has recently worked at Bluedot Festival

  • A typical day involves him getting there early to see who’s going to be on stage and making sure he has everything he needs for the acts

  • He is the son of two musicians and always wanted to be a musician himself. Although he didn’t study Music at school, he focused on playing instruments in his spare time. When exploring career choices at school, a career in music didn’t even come up as an option

  • Pete says a lot of people want to work in stage management and it can sometimes be seen as a glamorous industry or a free gig ticket, but it's actually hard work. You need to be driven and be prepared to work long hours. You also need to be friendly and be able to tell people when it’s time to get off the stage, so that the acts don’t overrun.

What to expect if you want to be a stage manager

  • Stage manager average salary: £18,000 to £48,000
  • Stage manager typical working hours: 39 to 41 hours per week. You could work evenings, weekends and bank holidays.

What qualifications do you need to be a stage manager?

You could get into this role via a university course, a college course, an apprenticeship or working towards this role.

Sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service

This information is a guide and is constantly changing. Please check the National Careers Service website for the latest information and all the qualifications needed.

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