Careers in the Arts
10 performing arts jobs that you may not have thought of
If you have been performing for people ever since you can remember, love comparing plays and get a rush when you are in front of an auditorium of people, you’re probably considering majoring in theater. You probably also wonder about performing arts jobs.
If you are worried about how “actor/actress” seems to get changed to “waiter/waitress” way to often, don’t get discouraged. There are hundreds of performing arts jobs out there for theater majors, even if you are a struggling artist. Here are just a few of the alternatives to the restaurant business.
Performing Arts Jobs
1. Work for a local theater as a house manager to decide which shows to book and when to book them, do ticketing and manage ushers and other theater employees. Careers in the performing arts often require management functions.
2. Be a box office manager. You’ll sell tickets, take incoming phone calls and answer inquiries about shows and be in charge of the ticket money.
3. Theaters need to promote their plays and other events, and for this they need someone in public relations. Events have to be advertised if they are to be successful. As a PR person, you will talk to newspapers, radio stations, television networks and magazines to promote your theater and shows. You will also be in charge of distributing flyers and posters in these performing arts jobs.
4. If you have a special interest in fashion, consider becoming a costume designer. You will have to research period clothing or perhaps even come up with your own concepts of costumes for productions.
5. Are you more technically oriented? Get a bird’s-eye view of the theater as a lighting designer. Like a costume designer, you might have to get creative at times when working to light the stage for productions.
6. Stage technicians work long hours and get to be involved in every aspect of the theater from pre- to post-production. They work on scenery, costumes and makeup. They move scenery during shows, do carpentry and keep track of props. This job requires a wide range of knowledge about the industry.
7. If you double major in English or journalism, you could become a theater critic and work for a newspaper, magazine, radio or Web-based publication. You will be able to enjoy (or not) the theater and voice your opinion about the productions you see.
8. If you want to spread your love of acting to others, you could be an independent acting coach. Individuals looking to make it in the acting business could hire you to help them make it big.
9. You could be a high school drama teacher. Not only will you teach classes, but you will also get to put on a play and be involved in every aspect: casting, props, set and costume production, promotion, directing and producing.
10. If it is acting that you are interested in, keep acting! But you can also go back to school to study acting or something different, such as English or business. If you are more interested in the behind-the-scenes aspect, learn about business plans accounting practices. In the meantime, don’t lose sight of these great jobs that will keep you involved in your passion!
Learn about performing arts jobs and other careers in the arts at NextStepU Career Finder
Liz Rosenthal is a recent graduate of Mary Washington College and is an intern for The Next Step Magazine.