The Technical Director is responsible for scenic operations of the Theatre Department productions, including lighting, sound, set design and construction. The Technical Director maintains technical spaces and equipment and develops and enforces practices that ensure safe, efficient, and effective operation of the scenic operations of Getz Theatre, Sheldon Patinkin Theatre, Classic Studio Theatre, and Studio 404. The position also supervises the Scene Shop. The role directly supports student learning and acts as the technical expert to provide consultation to students and ensures the success of the scenic operations for over 40 productions per year with more than 200 performances – all designed and stage managed by students and majority directed by students. The Technical Director reports to the Production Manager and assists in identifying and prioritizing needs and initiatives, finding creative solutions to achieve goals while conserving resources.
The Technical Director is a skilled theater professional who is highly knowledgeable in all aspects of scenic construction and will effectively navigate the complexities of a multifaceted work environment and ambitious production calendars.
DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES
• Operate, maintain and safeguard the technical assets of theatre facilities, including lighting, sound, communications equipment, and all aspects of rigging. Manage the Scene Shop.
• Determine technical needs for Mainstage productions – technical specifications, schedules, budget and crew. Order materials and manage scenic design budgets. Coordinate the stage and equipment logistics; including the loading and unloading of trucks.
• Design or approve designs with regard to safety, compatibility and scheduling considerations. Set up, maintain, and operate lighting and sound systems; create technical drawings and plans and oversee and build sets. Strike down all sets, props, lighting and sound after the end of the shows.
• Act as the technical expert and advise students on technical aspects of their projects. Supervise, instruct and manage students during all production crew calls, rehearsals, performances and technical theatre classes.
• Assist the Production Manager in recruiting and train, assign work, and supervise volunteer or paid technical staff for shows.
• Supervise and assist in the technical aspects of all shows, establish technical schedules for all productions; attend technical rehearsals. Ensure safety.
• Work with the Master Carpenter to determine build and maintenance schedules and asses staffing needs.
• Hire and supervise student work technical aides; train, instruct, and supervise student crew members and technicians.
• Orient facility users to safety, technical characteristics, and other areas of facility operations.
• Plan and direct all Scene Shop operations – create and manage shop schedules; create and maintain inventories of technical supplies and equipment and scenic elements for student project use; oversee the process of checking scenic elements in and out; oversee shop’s staff.
• Develop and enforce practices that ensure safe, efficient, and effective operation of all theater facilities and the Scene Shop.
• Maintain technical spaces and equipment in the shops and theatre spaces; monitor the condition of equipment and perform preventive maintenance; inspect equipment on a regular basis; develop a replacement and upgrade schedule for tools and equipment and arrange for the repair and replacement within budgetary constraints.
• Assist the Production Manager with the preparation and control of production budgets for technical items.
• Make recommendations regarding capital purchases of technical equipment.
• Perform other duties as assigned.
• Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre and a minimum of three years working as a Technical Director in a professional or educational environment or an equivalent combination of education and experience. Previous experience in an academic environment preferred.
• Working knowledge of techniques, methods and procedures of theatre, dance, and music productions and presentations including stage, set, sound and lighting design and implementation; stage management; computerized lighting systems; appropriate safety precautions and procedures and ability to analyze and evaluate the need for technical support for various events and performances.
• Working knowledge of PC and Macintosh based productivity software, as well as functional familiarity with industry standard theatrical software and able to learn other software as needed.
• Prior supervisory experience of a team in a dynamic environment. Experience advising and training students preferred.
• Excellent communication skills, both written and oral. Establish and maintain effective working relationships with various groups.
• Problem solving skills.
• Valid Driver’s License.
• Able to lift, push or pull objects up to 100 pounds using appropriate tools, safely climb stairs and ladders, and use Genie lifts.
• Able to maintain a flexible work schedule, which may include irregular and extended working hours.
At Columbia, we offer a rewarding work environment for our faculty and staff. We take pride in offering competitive benefits with affordable health, dental and vision coverage; flexible spending accounts; commuter benefit program, life and accidental, death & dismemberment coverage; paid and unpaid leave options; work/life benefits; educational assistance programs; and retirement and financial planning benefits.
We invite you to join our talented faculty and staff and become part of our collective aspiration to ensure Columbia prepares students for success in their creative fields through innovation, engagement and real-world experiences.
To ensure consideration, please include a cover letter, salary requirements, and three professional references in your submission.
Position subject to a background screening. This is a union position.
Qualified candidates of diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
Columbia College Chicago is an EEO Employer