Musical theater job descriptions

Updated February 21, 2017

While the performers may be the only ones visible in a musical, there are many people working behind the scenes to make sure the show will go on as intended. Here are several musical theatre job descriptions that take place outside of the limelight.


The director of a musical guides the actors in playing their parts, oversees the details of the show's design and works to create a piece of theatre that fulfils the vision of all involved.

Music Director

The music director conducts the orchestra, if one is used, and rehearses with the actors to help them learn the music in the show.


What's a musical without dancing? A choreographer is the person who creates the dance steps in a musical. They also help the actors find their characters' physicality.


Light, set, and costumes designers bring the visual elements of a musical to life. They work with the director to help bring his vision to stage.

Stage Manager

Stage managers keep things running smoothly, both during rehearsals and while the show is in production. They file rehearsal reports to keep all involved abreast of any changes or developments in the process. During the run of the show, they often are responsible for calling the light and sound cues, supervising the run crew and making sure the actors know when it is time to go on stage.

Run Crew

The crew is responsible for running the light and sound boards, operating the fly system and supervising the wardrobe.

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About the Author

Based in Pennsylvania, Emily Weller has been writing professionally since 2007, when she began writing theater reviews Off-Off Broadway productions. Since then, she has written for TheNest, ModernMom and Rhode Island Home and Design magazine, among others. Weller attended CUNY/Brooklyn college and Temple University.