top of page



For large print click HERE


Papatango Theatre Company, Laurels Theatre and November Club are looking for a
trainee stage manager, to be based in Tyneside from 13 November – 23 December
2023. This is a full-time, fully paid position (on the basis of being a self-employed

The successful candidate will receive training to work as the designated stage
manager on a world premiere production at Laurels, Whitley Bay. Supported by an
experienced mentor, they will collaborate with leading theatre-makers, including
Olivier Award winners, in a role of genuine responsibility and autonomy, and obtain a
professional stage management credit.

It is suitable for anyone looking to develop a career in stage management; no prior
professional experience of stage management is required, but candidates will need
to demonstrate a reasonable understanding of theatre-making processes, whether
that is from training, work in other roles such as a director or actor, or other relevant
experience (i.e. amateur/student productions).

The production is The Watch House, adapted by Chris Foxon from the novel by
Robert Westall. It is directed by George Turvey – winner of the 2022 Genesis
Foundation Prize, featured on The Stage 25 list of leading theatre-makers, with
directing credits at Arcola Theatre, Southwark Playhouse, Stephen Joseph Theatre,
Theatr Clwyd and many other prestigious venues as well as BBC Radio 4. It features
a cast of three, in a 70-seat black box theatre. More information is available here: 

The Watch House | Laurels Whitley Bay

Role Description
The successful candidate will receive five days of induction to rehearsals and
training in stage management with a mentor. They will then join the production as the
designated stage manager, with their mentor remaining available to advise and
consult remotely. The mentor will also return to provide in-person support and
guidance during technical rehearsals.

This is not a purely training position; the successful candidate will be expected to
apply their learning to run a production as stage manager. This entails but is not
necessarily limited to:

- Company management, including scheduling call times and acting as a point
of contact;
- Scheduling and organising rehearsals, tech sessions and performances;
- Minuting production meetings;
- Sourcing/making props or set dressing in consultation with the director and
design team;
- Pre-setting performances, including technical checks;
- Operating lighting and sound desks and being on book during performances;
- Maintaining costumes and doing weekly laundry.

The successful candidate will therefore need to demonstrate an ambition and
aptitude to learn quickly and progress to being a vital part of a production team.
Hence some existing knowledge of rehearsal and production processes is a distinct

Candidate Profile
This role is designed to strengthen the region’s creative workforce and to equip a
theatre-maker with the skills and experience to add a career as a stage manager to
their portfolio. 
The successful candidate should therefore:

- Be based in the North-East;
- Demonstrate a commitment to a career in theatre/the arts more widely, though
not necessarily solely as a stage manager;
- Possess some relevant experience of theatre-making and a good working
knowledge of rehearsal and production processes, whether that’s professional
or amateur; this may be from any role, not just stage management;
- Recognise that this opportunity is an investment in developing new skills and
sustaining a career in the arts, articulating how the role will support their long-
term career or aspirations;
- Show the ambition and pro-active drive needed to translate training and
mentoring into self-led delivery.


Structure and Dates
The role is for 6 weeks from 13 November – 23 December 2023, Mondays to
Saturdays (with Saturdays 18 and 25 November and 2 December as paid holiday).

Training with a mentor stage manager is provided 13 - 17 November 2023; this will
include some time in rehearsals, meeting the director, creative team and cast, and
some time focused purely on professional development.

From 20 November – 1 December 2023 the trainee stage manager will join the
company in rehearsals on a full-time basis, applying their learning to deliver the role.

Their mentor will remain available remotely for advice or consultation.
From 4 – 5 December 2023 the trainee stage manager will play a key role in
technical rehearsals, with their mentor present throughout to guide and support.
From 5 December – 23 December 2023 the trainee stage manager will run the
production, encompassing previews, press night and performances. Their mentor will
remain available for remote consultation and advice.

In January 2024 the trainee stage manager will be asked to contribute to an
evaluation process to help us determine the impact of this training/development

The weekly rate of pay is £545. This is a company rate for all members of the team.
In lieu of holiday pay, there are three days of paid leave within the contract period.

Application Process

You can apply in written, audio OR video formats (please pick one only).
Please email written applications to with the subject line:

“[Your Name] SM Role”. This application should comprise a statement of up to 500
words about why you’re interested in the role, and how you meet the candidate

Please email audio or video applications to with the subject
line: “[Your Name] SM Role”, or share/link via WeTransfer, Office 365 or Google
Drive. This application should consist of a 3 - 4 minute clip, letting us know why you
are interested in the role, and how you meet the candidate profile.

If you would prefer to make your application in another form, please contact us to
discuss this – we will endeavour to meet all such requests and to make the process
as accessible as possible. These or any other queries should be made to

There will be an online Q&A session with Chris Foxon from Papatango and Louise
Taylor-Asheg from November Club, at 12.30pm on Thursday 26 October 2023.
There’s no need to register, join via this link:

The deadline for applications is 12pm (noon) on Tuesday 31 October 2023.

We will be in touch with all applicants by the end of Wednesday 1 November 2023.


Shortlisted candidates will be invited to interview on Friday 3 November 2023
(please let us know in your application if you cannot do this date, and we will do our
best to find an alternative if possible).

Interviews will be available either in-person at Laurels Theatre in Whitley Bay or on Zoom.

As part of improving our offer to freelancers and making interviews more accessible,
we will be upfront about the questions you will be asked and what we will discuss.
You will be given the opportunity to ask questions during the interview, if you would
like to.

Travel Costs
We will reimburse reasonable costs of travelling to attend an in-person interview.

We are committed to meeting everybody’s access requirements including any
reasonable adjustments and arrangements for interview. We have allocated budget
for this.

Please note that Laurels Theatre is a historic building with steep staircases and no
disabled access.

Shortlisted applicants will have an opportunity to inform us of requirements before
interview. If you have access requirements relating to submitting an application or
wish to discuss access requirements in advance, please contact Chris Foxon on

November Club & GROW
November Club creates exceptional and remarkable theatre in unusual places from
their home in Northumberland.

Launched in June 2023, GROW is November Club’s development programme,
offering a range of opportunities for individuals at all stages of their career, working
across performance, creative and production roles.

In addition to supporting the training aspect of this role, November Club will also:

- Introduce the trainee stage manager to other small-scale producing theatre
companies based in the North East;
- Offer the trainee stage manager guaranteed interviews for stage management
roles on November Club’s 2024 productions, should they choose to apply.

For more information and to sign up to the GROW mailing list visit

Papatango Theatre Company

Papatango champions new theatre talent. Named in The Stage 25 as industry
leaders, our world premieres have won Olivier, Critics’ Circle, OffWestEnd, Alfred
Fagon, South Bank Sky Arts and Royal National Theatre Foundation awards and
transferred to over 30 countries.

Laurels Theatre
Housed in a 120-year-old social club in Whitley Bay, North Tyneside, Laurels is a
fringe theatre and nightspot founded by Olivier Award-winning theatre-maker Jamie
Eastlake and comedy writer Steve Robertson in 2021. With a year-round theatrical
programme, belter nights out and artist development programme, Laurels has
quickly became a hotspot for artistic work and audiences on the North East coast.

bottom of page