Urinetown, The Musical, 2014
photo courtesy of Teresa L. Steward Photography
Unlike other GVSU students in business and other professional fields, however, most theatre graduates cannot realistically expect to find work in Michigan, but must anticipate relocating to pursue postgraduate training or career opportunities in the nation's metropolitan centers. Additionally, statistics reveal that most young artists embarking on careers today in motion pictures, theatre, fine arts and music must be prepared to follow the "ten year rule:" it will normally take them about ten years of low-paying work or apprenticeship situations before they find their "voice" and win public recognition. Some of the typical career fields for theatre graduates include the following:
Stage Manager - Theatre Designer - Lighting Technician - Producer - Stage Crew - Facilities Manager - Writer - Costume Assistant - Publicist - Box Office Manager - Teacher - Director - Sound Technician - House Manager - Production Coordinator
Other students who completed our program have located more prestigious positions both locally and nationally. Mary Kate Barley became the managing director of a children's theatre company in Chicago after her graduation; Jane Kuipers has stage managed for groups like the San Diego Opera and the Alabama Shakespeare Festival; and Jackie Sweeney is a professional actress in Colorado. Jeff Lieder, a costume designer, is now the head of costume production at the University of Wisconsin; while Max Bush's plays have been produced worldwide, earning him national recognition as one of the United States' most talented youth theatre authors.