Stage Management, BA

Duration: 3 years, full-time

UCAS code: Institution C35; Course W491

Award: BA (Hons) Theatre Practice

Stage Management


A complete stage management training. You will work with students of other disciplines to gain a practical understanding of the production process as a whole, and learn the professional role of stage manager both in managing the performance and as conduit between director and production team throughout the rehearsal process.

About the course

This course trains Stage Managers to adapt to any production setting, from more traditional West End theatres to large-scale outdoor events. You will be introduced to a practice model that underpins traditional British theatre experienced in the commercial and subsidised sectors, with opportunities to encounter community, small-scale fringe, devised, physical, visual, site-responsive and immersive theatre.

As a Stage Manager, you will be responsible for communicating developments as they occur through rehearsals and negotiating solutions to production challenges. You will further develop practical management skills through teamwork on productions with students from other courses and visiting professionals.

Course Detail

Year 1

Through a series of workshops and realised projects, you will complete units to develop the basic skills necessary for creating a performance. You will undertake classes and workshops, including managing rehearsals and performances, blocking and working with the cast and director, marking-up, show calling, props sourcing and adapting, costume supervision and sewing, lighting, sound and staging technology. There will also be workshops focusing on text analysis, group dynamics, communication and current legislation, including health and safety. You will be the Assistant Stage Manager on a realised production, working with students from the Acting, BA course and other courses.

Year 2

There will be taught sessions including score-reading, company management, pyrotechnics, firearms and blood effects, and event management. You will undertake the roles of Assistant and Deputy Stage Manager on a range of realised production projects from main-house, proscenium theatre shows to site-responsive, fringe work, or projects outside Central, including community theatre, immersive theatre and event management. You may also be required to operate sound and lighting on small-scale productions. You will be assigned a professional mentor who will advise and guide you through this year and the next.

Year 3

You will undertake at least one role with significant management responsibilities and/or a role on a larger-scale, or more challenging production. You will be required to research and organise a suitable placement with a professional company of your choice to broaden your knowledge and understanding of the areas of work you may wish to enter upon graduation.

BA Theatre Practice Course Specification

Professional Focus

Stage Management students regularly undertake placements with a range of companies, including the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal Opera House, Chickenshed Theatre, Bush Theatre, Complicite, Young Vic, Hampstead Theatre, English National Opera (via an annual graduate internship), Donmar Warehouse and the Royal Court Theatre. The course works on more unconventional immersive productions and in non-traditional theatre-making areas with companies such as Border Crossings, Nutkhut, Goat & Monkey, Block 9 at Glastonbury Festival and Secret Cinema. It also provides links with street arts, working with festivals such as The London Pleasure Gardens, as well as outdoor entertainment companies Walk the Plank, The World Famous, Emergency Exit Arts and Kinetika.

Recent Graduate Employment Includes

Company Manager: Les Misérables; Almeida Theatre; Salisbury Playhouse.  Stage Manager: Cirque du Soleil’s Varekai; Sochi Winter Olympics ceremionies; The Commitment; Morecambe, Duchess Theatre; The Globe; Orange Tree Theatre; The Master And Margarita, Complicite. Deputy Stage Manager: Hair; Matilda, West End; National Theatre; Royal Court Theatre; Lyric Hammersmith; Jack And The Beanstalk, Watford Palace Theatre; Clwyd Theatr, Cymru. Assistant Stage Manager: Manchester Royal Exchange; English National Opera; Shunkin, A Disappearing Number, The Master And Margarita, Complicite; Royal Opera House; Men Should Weep, National Theatre of Scotland; Pitlochry Festival Theatre; Calendar Girls, tour; The Ladykillers, From Here To Eternity, Pajama Game, West End. Production Manager: MisManage, Glastonbury Festival; The Curve Theatre, Leicester; Young Vic. Deputy Production Manager: National Theatre. Assistant Manager: London 2012 Olympic Ceremonies. Production Assistant: Square Deals Productions. Producer, Heart Productions.

Entry Requirements and Admissions

Minimum Entry Requirements

3 A Levels at BBC, BTEC ND: DDM.

Offers may vary from this, depending upon expected grades and performance at interview. Exceptional applicants who do not meet this requirement but demonstrate appropriate potential at interview and via their portfolio may be accepted. All candidates invited to interview are asked to bring a portfolio.

Admission with Academic Credit

For information on alternative entry requirements please see

Application Details

See How to Apply section for Undergraduate courses.

Interviews in London

Find out more about the interview process for this course.

International Interviews

Each year Central hosts a number of interviews outside of the UK, with a team of tutors from Central traveling to meet applicants. The international interviews are designed to replicate the London-based interview experience in every aspect (other than a tour of our site!). See our Events Finder for listings of upcoming interview locations and dates.

International Students

Visit the International Students section to view details of English language requirements for Central's courses.


Notable graduates of this course include:

Matt Watkins (2006) Stage Manager on the musical Once. Senior Stage Manager on the opening and closing ceremonies of the London 2012 Olympics.


View profiles of the academic staff who teach on this course. Click on each staff member to see their CV.

Peter Maccoy, BSc, PGCert

Senior Lecturer, Theatre Production, Pathway Leader Stage Management

Current Students

Related Courses


Mariel Bunnage

Mariel Bunnage

Graduating 2015

The placements I’ve undertaken and the encouragement I’ve received from tutors have been invaluable. I’ve undertaken stage management on large scale outdoor performances (with pyrotechnics), event management for various council sponsored events, and worked as part of the technical team at one of the UK’s leading circus training schools. Working with people who look at theatre in a different way to you isn’t always easy, but it pushes you to be innovative and prepares you for the real world.

Register for email updates