A theater manager, sometimes known as a general manager, director, or plan holder, is the primary administrator of a theater company. They typically have the same roles as an artistic director but most importantly supervise all budgetary, creative, technical, and artistic functions of the theater. This includes such things as scheduling and booking of artists, conducting show prep, and selecting a cast and crew.
As a theater manager you are ultimately in charge of the company’s financial future. You are responsible for handling the business side of the theater as well as providing the on-the-ground support necessary to ensure that shows are running smoothly. In addition, you are often the de facto public relations person for the theater, crafting and disseminating press releases, stage shows, advertisements, and so forth. In short, you are the face of the theater business.
But what if you aren’t an artist? How can you be involved in theater while not personally owning a theater? Fortunately, there are theater management systems available that incorporate the essential components of owning a theater without needing to rely on an artist for financial backing. These management systems give artists the tools they need to manage their own projects independently from a bank.
But what kinds of theater management systems are out there? In general, there are two primary options: software and hardware. Software theater management systems are ideal for anyone who doesn’t have enough experience with computers to effectively run a large-scale operation. Hardware-based theater management systems are great for those who are interested in creating a theater from scratch and who have the resources to purchase their own theater facilities.
One system that has recently made waves in the theater community is called Light Speed Theater. This software allows users to import their own video footage into a system that allows viewing of the movie in real time. The system then organizes the information and compiles it into a digital video file (DVR). This file can then be sent to any television set in the home, that is equipped with a DVR. With this system, friends and family who want to watch the film immediately at their leisure can do so with only a laptop, computer, and an Internet connection.
Technology is changing almost every aspect of our lives, but few things are not affected in a positive way. theaters are no exception. As technology improves, theater owners are able to offer more to their customers while simultaneously reducing expenses. As new technology continues to develop, theater ownership may become less of a risk.