Stage Professions

Artistic Director: makes all of the artistic decisions, from planning the program to hiring the artists.

Musical Director or Conductor: coordinates all of the musical elements of the opera; the musicians are in the pit, the singers on the stage along with the chorus. The Musical Director influences the production with his/her musical interpretation and works in collaboration with the director. During the performance, he/she directs the musicians and singers silently, using his/her hands or a baton. A courtesy title of Maestro is sometimes given to the conductor.

Director: takes care of the visual aspect of a production and the movements and positions of the soloists and choir on stage. He/she gives the production its visual rhythm and cohesion. The director gives personality to the various characters and directs their behaviour to express what he/she requires.

Production Director: is the link between the artistic and administrative aspects of the production. He/she supervises the technical personnel during rehearsals and performances.

Technical Director: co-ordinates technicians and employees working on the sound, lighting, sets and costumes.

Stage Manager: co-ordinates the entire performance, especially the visual aspects from the rising of the curtain at the beginning to the artists’ bows at the end.

Set Designer: plans and oversees the construction of the sets for the various acts.

Lighting Designer: plans and creates the colours, intensity and frequency of the stage lighting.

Costume Designer: designs the costumes and supervises their creation.

Surtitle Designer: translates the wording for the surtitle projection to facilitate the audience’s understanding when the opera is presented in a foreign language.

Dresser: helps the artists put on their costumes correctly and makes sure that each singer has their clothing ready and available when needed.

Make-up and Hair: creates the hairstyles and makeup for the artists.

Props: looks for or makes the many objects that are an integral part of the set and the costumes (tea pot, purse, books, utensils).

Choreographer: creates then teaches the dance steps and movements on the stage to the artists.

Stage Technician: installs the sets on the stage and move they when there are scene changes. Electrician: installs projectors and all electrical elements of a production.

Pyrotechnician: takes care of special effects.

Projectionist: projects the surtitles (translation of words sung) on a screen in front of the stage.