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Internships and Student Jobs

The time and effort involved in the production of theatre can be daunting. Our yearly production season comprises three Mainstage and two Studio presentations. Add to this our involvement in facilitating music recitals, concerts, and other events in E.E. Bach Theatre, and it is apparent that we need a large and professional-style technical crew.

Theatre Department Employment

Much of the student work of the Theatre Department is remunerated through academic credit. This is the case with all performer activity and for much of the production crew work. Practicum credits are free credits. You pay for 18 regular course-style credits (a full academic load), and you can add your work on productions — two more credits — free. In effect, you’re being paid with credits.

We also employ a few qualified students to serve as leads in the fulfillment of our task.

Theatre employment positions are available only through an application process. An application notice will be sent via email during Spring Quarter. Download and complete the application form (PDF), and return it to Theatre Chair Andrew Ryder by the posted deadline.

You do not need to be a Theatre major to be hired as a student employee. Because hiring is done during Spring Quarter from among candidates who have proven themselves in our program, these employment positions are not available to incoming freshmen.

To continue as a student employee, you will need to reapply each year.

Off-Campus Theatre Employment and Internships

Employment

Each year several of our Theatre students find employment (usually work/study) with a major theatre around town, most notably Seattle Repertory Theatre, Intiman Theatre, ACT, Seattle Children’s Theatre, and Taproot Theatre. These jobs are usually in promotion, production, or in the box office, but they are good ways of making contacts, and usually pay off with free space‑available tickets beyond the paycheck.

Usually your work hours can be arranged to fit around your course schedule, but you’ll want to be cautious that your job doesn’t cut into your opportunities to be involved in campus productions, especially during Production Practicum hours.

Internships

Some professional or semiprofessional theatres offer internship positions to Theatre students. Internships imply a closer relationship with the artistic company, although some places use the word “internship” to substitute for “employment.” They act as a kind of apprenticeship program, in which younger artists work with “master” craftsmen and artists. Often these are summer programs. Invariably they offer low or no wages. The most legitimate ones — Seattle Repertory Theatre, for example — are promoted nationally, and competition for positions is stiff.

Internships come in all shapes and sizes, and the best plan is to check them out carefully if you are interested. As announcements come to the faculty, they are posted in lower McKinley Hall. All outside internships need to be coordinated with Theatre faculty, especially if Theatre internship credit (TRE 4943 “Theatre Internship”) hours are requested. These internships require a mutual contract between the Theatre Department and the theatre in which the internship takes place.

classroom

What Is a Dramaturg?

A dramaturg (drăm ə- tûrj) researches productions for information useful in the rehearsal process and development of program notes; works directly with the director or designer; presents research and background information at plenary sessions; and attends selected rehearsals and production meetings.

Jerry Collum

Jerry Collum is assistant professor of Theatre and technical director at SPU.

Why Study Theatre?

Why Study Theatre?

Studying theatre, performing theatre, and otherwise engaging in the world and work of theatre will enrich your life and offer you many career and life opportunities.

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