Business, Technology and the Arts

Division Contact

Don Topolski
Division Chair
Arts & Media Building, F-153
Business, B-138

Main Phone:
716-614-5960 (F-153)
716-614-6460 (B-138)

Jennifer Parris, Division Assistant
Lisa Poole, Division Assistant

Careers in Theatre Arts

Actor: Brings life to the written word and action of the text

Artistic Director: Selects plays for the theatre season, hires artistic staff, and sometimes participates in fund raising

Box Office Manager: Oversees reservations and sales of tickets for current and future productions

Business Manager: Controls the money, deals with budget development and allocation, sets ups accounts with vendors

Choreographer: Creates and teaches the dance and/or combat movements for the production

Costume Designer: Designs all costumes for the production

Drama Coach: Works individually with an actor either to develop generic acting skills or to prepare for a specific role

Dramaturge: Conducts research and text analysis for a production

Director: Interprets the script and determines the specific vision of a production. Oversees the rehearsals and elements of design to insure adherence to that vision

House Manager: Oversees ushers and ticket takers and all front-of-house operations

Lighting Designer: Designs and draws up the lighting for the production / Establishes light looks, levels and cues

Make-up Artist: Designs, creates and oversees all the makeup for the production

Master Carpenter: Oversees other carpenters working on the production. Determines all construction plans and materials

Master Electrician: Ensures that lighting equipment is maintained, hung, focused and run according to written and verbal instructions of the designer

Musical Director: Oversees all rehearsals and may conduct the musicians and rehearse the actors who have singing parts

Playwright: Creates the script

Producer: Secures financial backing and venue for the performance, and hires the production staffing

Production Manager: Coordinates production schedules and administrative / logistic details of the multi-show theatrical season

Pyrotechnician: Designs, sets up and executes the fireworks display or other pyro effects

Recording Engineer: Design the recording of the music and/or sound effects with levels, effects or other processing

Rigger: Hangs objects in the fly space above the stage. This may be sound equipment, lights, scenery, or special effects

Scenic Designer: Designs the scenery and props. Supplies all drawings, sketches, models and water paintings of the set concept

Scenic Painter: Facilitates the scenic designer's ideas and brings them to life on the backdrops or actual set pieces

Sound Designer: Creates the overall design of the sound system from choice of microphones to placement of speakers, types of live or recorded effects and/or music that may be needed for the production. 

Special Effects Designer: Creates the effects used in a production from trap doors to puppetry to break away furniture and more

Stage Crew: Run the back stage area; do the scene shifts of sets and props, etc.

Stage Manager: Oversees all performance-related aspects of a production from pre-audition planning and research through rehearsal and performance to closing. Acts as liaison between director, performers, designers, technicians and administration

Technical Director: Oversees the scene shop, construction of scenery, movement and installation of scenery, and ordering of materials. They are considered a "jack-of-all-trades"

Technician: Operates and/or maintains materials in the theatre or tour world

Theatre Consultant: A person whose knowledge is used to give suggestion and ideas in how to setup, specify or oversee installation of equipment in theatres 

Theatre Critic: A person who writes reviews of a show for newspapers, magazines or other media

Theatre Educator: Teaches classes in the field of theatre

Vocal Coach: A person who helps actors with vocal issues such as projection, articulation, breath control or dialect in relation to a specific character