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A New Guide

Stage directing at festivals

A checklist for stage directors at SCDA festivals 

At all times:

  • Ensure that an impartial approach is maintained and be aware that casual comments or actions might be misconstrued and subject to misinterpretation.

Before the opening date of the Festival

  • be thoroughly familiar with the facilities and safety implications of the venue
  • be thoroughly familiar with the procedures for an SCDA Festival
  • receive all technical and safety forms from the Organising Secretary, pass them to technical personnel a clear week before the festival and ensure that any foreseeable problems are addressed
  • liaise with competing teams as soon as possible, emphasising the theatre’s safety rules; address any technical or safety issues arising from the forms
  • give competing teams the opportunity to view the stage facilities prior to the Festival

During Technical Rehearsals

  • Make sure all teams are treated equitably and calmly
  • give a safety briefing to each team, including emergency evacuation procedures
  • ensure that stage materials meet safety requirements especially fire-proofing and PAT testing and that safe handling procedures are followed
  • provide appropriate stage crew assistance as required
  • authorise start and stop times and advise of remaining time at appropriate intervals e.g. half way and 10 and 5 minutes from the end.
  • in the event of a technical problem beyond the control of a team, the Stage Director will stop the clock and re-start once the problem has been solved
  • report any contravention of procedures to the Organising Secretary as soon as possible
  • check if teams wish a private adjudication – this applies at all levels including the Scottish Final

During Performances

  • call teams to the stage
  • supervise and time the erection of sets; give warning at 5 and 8 minutes as well as warning of over-run
  • in liaison with FOH and technical personnel authorise the start of performance
  • in the event of an emergency close tabs and take appropriate action
  • time the length of the performance
  • supervise and time the striking of sets; give warnings at 3 and 4 minutes as well as warning of over-run
  • in the event of an over-run inform the Organising Secretary as soon as possible.
  • forward completed time sheets to the Organising Secretary