Theater, Film, and TV Technicians

Last updated January 01, 2015

Maybe you got your first taste of the theater as a stagehand in a high school production of Oklahoma! Or maybe it’s the sparkle of Hollywood that’s grabbed your attention. If you love being part of a spirited, hardworking team and want to work on projects you can see and touch, this could be the career for you.

While technicians often specialize in particular areas, it takes a lot of flexibility to build a career. The more you can do, from wiring lights to building flats, the more work you’ll find -- especially early on in your career.

Theater, film, and TV technicians are craftspeople who work in stage, film, and TV productions building and decorating sets, setting up lighting and sound, and making costumes.

Did You Know?

As a technician, you’ll have few opportunities for self-expression because you'll use your skills to execute the product of a designer’s imagination.

Are You Ready To...?

  • Build and strike (take down) sets using hand and power tools
  • Use computers to produce lighting and sound effects
  • Paint backdrops
  • Sew and fit costumes
  • Shop for props
  • Read blueprints
  • Walk high catwalks to hang lights

It Helps To Be...

Good with your hands, physically fit, and capable of working with others under pressure.

Make High School Count

  • Work behind the scenes on high school stage productions designing and building sets, making costumes, and setting up lights and sound.
  • Sign up for classes in computer applications and computer-assisted drafting and design (CADD).
  • Build drawing and painting skills in art classes.
  • Learn how to take measurements in a fitting and use a sewing machine in home ec.

Did You Know?

Theater technicians can find steady work by signing on for a whole season with professional regional theaters.