The primary goal of the stage manager is to enable all members of a production to reach their full potential as artists. Our program, with a strong focus on collaboration and the development of new works, balances the needs of all artists, including the stage manager as artist.
Your three years in the MFA program will be tailored to meet your individual needs. Your faculty will serve as personal trainers, coaching you to resolve any deficiencies and to maximize your strengths as a stage manager. We seek intellectually curious and academically gifted students with strong interpersonal skills.
A new class of MFA Stage Management students is admitted every fall. The deadline to apply for the fall of 2021 is January 15, 2021 (students attending U/RTAs should follow U/RTA deadlines).
The University of Iowa is one of the few programs in the United States with two dedicated full-time faculty members in Stage Management. There is no single “Iowa way” to stage manage a production, but rather students learn multiple approaches to best match the needs of an individual production.
Annual Theatre Trip to Network & Shadow
The theatre world is a small world, and who you know is as important as what you know. Our annual graduate stage manager trip rotates between regional and touring productions in Washington, D.C., commercial Broadway and Off-Broadway productions in New York City, and other theatre hub cities. This three-year rotation serves to expose our students to different kinds of work opportunities in the industry and to broaden their professional networks. Students typically shadow 3-4 productions and tour at least 2 other venues. Many of these advanced shadowing opportunities allow the students to observe pre-show and performance and to have lengthy career discussions with PSMs, SMs, and ASMs. During our 2018 trip to New York City our students shadowed stage managers and met with production managers at The Lion King, The Book of Mormon, Pretty Woman, Kinky Boots, Once on this Island and the Metropolitan Opera.
Academic & Program Evaluation
Your academic work, including your own teaching or research assistant work, will be reviewed at the end of each semester. At the end of your second year of study, you will participate in a comprehensive review of your academic and production work. During the exam the SM Faculty Committee will review material including student performance evaluations, academic record, and the student’s personal statement.
Iowa Stage Managers, Past and Present
Link to a selection of current and recent Iowa Stage Managers' bios.
Head of Stage Management
Department of Theatre Arts
The University of Iowa
107 Theatre Building
Iowa City, IA 52242-1705