Company Manager & Stage Managers

A christmas themed group photo on stage

The Company Manager, Richard Pattison, is the line manager for the department.

The department consists of Company Manager and two full time Stage Managers, Julie Issott and Michelle Booth, with Deputy Stage Managers and Assistant Stage Managers appointed for specific shows and projects.

Richard is responsible for the duty of care for the actors, performers, and artists working for the Playhouse.   He liaises directly with actors before the start of rehearsals to check they have sorted out accommodation/digs, travel arrangements and received the actor’s welcome pack, an introduction to the organisation, staff and facilities.

His additional responsibilities includes arranging ‘Meet and Greets’ to welcome new companies into the organisation, arranging complimentary tickets for Creative Team/Actors/Artists/Performers, arranging auditions when required, booking rehearsals rooms, Young Performer’s Licences with the Local Authority and recruiting Stage Management staff for shows and projects.

The Stage Managers, Deputy Stage Managers and Assistant Stage Managers are initially responsible for monitoring the rehearsal process and making sure relevant departments are notified of any developments which may affect the set build are recorded on rehearsals notes and circulated to the relevant departments.

The Stage Managers are the main liaison link between rehearsals and the production departments.   They will co-ordinate and arrange wardrobe fittings, Creative Team visits (e.g. Fight Director, Vocal Coach, Movement Director) and  communicate to all departments throughout the organisation,  information from rehearsals.  The majority of shows at West Yorkshire Playhouse have a five week rehearsal period prior to the fit-up on stage.  They will prepare show setting lists and running lists ready for technical rehearsals on stage and will work closely with the Production Manager and Technical Stage Manager to allocate show duties to the crew employed to work on the show.

They are then responsible for the stage, actors, crew, dressers and performance staff once the show has opened to the public.

The Deputy Stage Manager prepares a script with detailed information regarding actors’ entrances, exits, scene change information, lighting and sound cues and quick changes, essential for the smooth running the show.

The Assistant Stage Manager generally supports and assists the Stage Manager and Deputy Stage Manager throughout the rehearsal period.   They work closely with the Stage Manager in running the show and are responsible for setting and checking props prior to shows including preparation of any food or drinks required on stage.