Skip to main content Skip to footer site map
Broadway Books
Click Here for More Articles on Broadway Books

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside!


Have the need to read? We've got your covered!

Looking for something new to read while staying inside, but still need your Broadway fix? We've rounded up 10 of our favorite books on stage management!

These books, many of which were written by stage managers either present or former, will teach people looking to break into stage management all about the basics. Some are aimed at students, or those just beginning their careers. With tips and tricks, inside information, and much more, there's something for every aspiring stage manager here!

Not a stage manager? Check out our list of 10 books on acting here, playwriting here, directing here, and producing here!

The Back Stage Guide to Stage Management

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Thomas A. Kelly

The next best thing to shadowing a Broadway stage manager, this detailed, behind-the-scenes book as been brought completely up to date. First published in 1991, it is widely used and has been lauded as the most comprehensive, educational book on stage management available. From preproduction planning and first rehersals to opening night and final strike, all the essentials of the profession are presented here in a friendly, engaging style.

About the Author: Thomas A. Kelly has been a professional stage manager and production manager for over forty years. He most recently worked as Production Stage Manager for New York City Opera and before that on Broadway and major production venues in New York City and nationally. He has taught Stage Management at Rutgers, SUNY Purchase, and Columbia University and is the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from USITT.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Stage Management: The Essential Handbook

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Gail Pallin

This is the highly successful "Bible for any stage manager" in a revised and updated edition. Aimed at students, graduates, and all those who aspire to stage management, whether amateur or professional. Complete with illustrations, diagrams, and checklists, it takes the reader through a typical production, week by week.

About the Author: Gail Pallin began her career in Stage Management at the Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh, and has worked at many major rep theatres throughout Britain, including The Royal Court Theatre, London. She now lectures in Stage Management at Queen Margaret University College, Edinburgh. She lives in Cupar, Fife.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Stage Management Basics: A Primer for Performing Arts Stage Managers

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Emily Roth, Jonathan Allender-Zivic, and Katy McGlaughlin

Stage Management Basics touches on basic principles for stage management for theatre, dance, and opera productions.

Without assuming any intrinsic prior knowledge of the theatrical field and its associated, specialized terminology, this book covers every aspect of the stage management, from reading a script, meeting with a director and theatre staff, and auditioning, to constructing green digital scripts, communication best practices, and opening night protocol. Additionally, this book features multiple appendices containing stage management form templates, blank version of which are available on its companion website.

About the Authors:

Jonathan Allender-Zivic, MFA has been teaching and working in the theatrical industry for over 15 years primarily a Professor, Lighting Designer and Technical Director. Jonathan has over 125 professional and academic credits in the past 5 years, keeping an active hand in the professional arena; he has most recently worked regionally in the mid-west designing lights but over the course of the past 15 years he has worked all over the country with different theatres and taught at four different colleges and university since receiving his MFA from Western Illinois University. He believes that receiving the fundamental building blocks in a discipline gives students that ability to lead successful careers in the future.

Emily Roth is a freelance stage manager and production manager currently living in New York City. She holds a BA from Coe College in Theatre with an Emphasis in Design and Technology and has worked professionally over the last three years across the Midwest and New York City, primarily as a stage manager, but also as a lighting designer, electrician, sound designer, and props master. As an early career professional that is largely self-taught in stage management, Emily felt the need for a text that introduces the topics that everyone takes for granted in young stage managers. With this book, she hopes to provide guidance to all those who are now where she has been.

Katy McGlaughlin has been working in and around theatre for as long as she can remember; a lot of stage managing and doing a little bit of everything else. She has worked all across the US on productions ranging from new works to large-scale musicals. She also spent some time as an assistant production manager and a company manager. Katy holds a BFA from Webster University, where she studied stage management and technical direction. After many years in the professional arena, Katy has decided to pursue her MFA in stage management from the University of Iowa. Stage Managing will always be her home but she thinks it is important to branch out and understand what is happening around you!

Purchase on Amazon here.

Stage Manager: The Professional Experience

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Larry Fazio

In every theatrical production, a single indispensable person is responsible for ensuring that scenery, lighting, actors, directors, sound artists are in sync. Stage Manager: the Professional Experience takes the reader through all aspects of the craft of stage management, from prompt books and laptops to relationships and people management. It offers an extensive discussion of what makes a good stage manager, and takes the reader through each phase of a production from getting hired, to auditions and rehearsals, to the run and closing of the show.

About the Author: Larry Fazio has served as a professional stage manger for 25 years, on well over 100 productions.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Essentials of Stage Management

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Peter Maccoy

Good stage management is key to the smooth running of any theatrical production and, as technology continues to develop and regulations tighten, the responsibilities of the stage manager have never been greater. In this essential guide, Peter Maccoy examines the qualities and skills necessary for effective management, stressing the importance of understanding both the creative and the technical processes involved in theatre. From negotiating contracts through to rehearsals, performance and post-production, Essentials of Stage Management is packed with invaluable advice on every aspect of the job and every type of theatre.

About the Author: Peter Maccoy is a Lecturer at the Central School of Speech and Drama and an experienced stage manager. He has worked at The National Theatre and the Chichester Festival Theatre, and has toured with the Peter Hall Company and the Almeida Theatre Company. He has also worked as a pyrotechnician on large scale outdoor events, and as a stage manager on a number of "industrial" theatre events.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Production Stage Management for Broadway: From Ideas to Opening Night & Beyond

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Peter Lawrence

Getting a new show up and running? Planning a revival? Taking over a long-running show? Going on the road? On Broadway, off Broadway, in regional repertory, or on tour, the only book you need as your professional companion is Peter Lawrence s comprehensive and definitive Production Stage Management for Broadway: From Idea to Opening Night and Beyond.

About the Author: Peter Lawrence is a stage manager with over 40 years of experience in the commercial theatre. Working as production stage manager, he originated over 25 Broadway productions, among them Spamalot, Hurlyburly, Sunset Boulevard, Shrek The Musical, and five new plays by Neil Simon. Production stage manager assignments have seen him working in dinner theatre, stock, regional theatres, Broadway, off-Broadway, and national tours. Lawrence has and continues to work with many of the great directors of our time.

Lawrence has managed shows for producers Cameron Mackintosh, Emanuel Azenberg, Fran and Barry Weissler, Kevin McCollum, Ariel Tepper Madover, Bill Haber, Bob Boyett, Robert Whitehead, Robert Fox, and many others. He is the first stage manager ever to have been honored by the Tony Awards and is a recipient of the Del Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award from the Stage Managers Association.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Stage Management: A Gentle Art

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Daniel Bond

This popular book describes in detail a stage manager's job. It provides those just starting out in the profession with a solid grounding in theatre stage management practices and procedures. The disciplines of lighting, set design and sound are discussed but the main focus is the management of these elements and the processes and scheduling that go together to provide effective results.

Chronologically following the production of a play, the book starts with pre-production planning and progresses to opening night. With easy reference checklists and a full glossary, it is the essential guide to stage management.

About the Author: Daniel Bond has worked in theatre stage management for over fourteen years. he has taught at the Central School of Speech and Drama.

Purchase on Amazon here.

A Stage Manager's Survival Guide: From Callbacks to Closing

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Michelle Marko

Offering tips and tricks to new stage managers as they navigate the chaotic world of theatre, Michelle Marko deploys decades of experience in a tightly packed manual. Every stage manager develops their own style, and after 20 years of ups and downs Michelle has seen it all. These survival tips can help novices and veterans alike to experience more of the exhilaration of live theatre, while learning to laugh when things don't quite go according to plan.

About the Author: Michelle has spent over 20 years as a stage manager for various colleges, community, local professional and semi-professional theatres. In that time she has gone from knowing everything (ah the joy that is being 18) to realizing how much she had to learn (the joy that is being over 21). She received her under graduate degree in Technical Theatre with an emphasis on stage management from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and her MBA from University of Phoenix.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Stage Managing and Theatre Etiquette: A Basic Guide

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Linda Apperson

Here is a practical, accessible introduction to one of the most complex jobs in theatre. Linda Apperson clearly and concisely leads the reader through the procedures and responsibilities of stage management, from auditions to closing night. What is "blocking"? How do you "call" a show? Who is the technical director, and why do you want him or her as your best friend? How can you tame (or endure) a prima donna? When is the best time to offer advice to the actors? Ms. Apperson answers these and countless other questions in a resource book that will become a constant companion for both the novice and the experienced theatre person.

About the Author: Linda Apperson has worked in summer stock, dinner theatre, and regional and community theatres in California, Florida, and Colorado for more than twenty years. A graduate of the School of Theatre at Florida State University, she now works at Stanford University and lives in Sunnyvale, California.

Purchase on Amazon here.

The Stage Management Handbook

Broadway Books: 10 Books on Stage Management to Read While Staying Inside! by Daniel Ionazzi

The three phrases of mounting and performing a show are covered. Part I takes the reader through the pre-production phase-research, the script, planning and organization, and auditions. Part II covers the rehearsal process-rehearsal rules, blocking, cues, prompting, information distribution, technical and dress rehearsals. Part III discusses the performance phase-calling the show, maintaining the director's work, working with understudies and replacements, and more.

Part IV provides insights into the organizational structure or some theaters and aspects of human behavior in those organizations. Many stage managers of long-running commercial productions believe that-once the show is up and running-only ten percent of their work is related to everything covered in Parts I, II and III. The other ninety percent is associated with issues in Part IV; i.e. "managing" human behavior and maintaining working relationships.

About the Author: Daniel Ionazzi is Production Manager for The Geffen Playhouse. He is also a member of the faculty of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television and Director of Production for the Department of Theater. Mr. Ionazzi is the author of The Stage Management Handbook and The Stagecraft Handbook. Design credits include: WWII - Beyond all Boundaries for the National World War II Museum. For Steppenwolf Theatre Company: The Seafarer. For South Coast Repertory Theater: In The Next Room. For the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts: Teatro alla Moda. For The Geffen Playhouse: Superior Donuts, A Step In Time; Nightmare Alley, The Female of the Species, The Seafarer, Atlanta, Speed-the-Plow, A Picasso, Wishful Drinking; All My Sons; (Ovation nomination); Cat On A Hot Tin Roof; Paint Your Wagon, Take Me Out, I Just Stopped By To See The Man, Boy Gets Girl (Ovation nomination), Under The Blue Sky, Oscar & Felix, God's Man in Texas, The Unexpected Man, The Weir, Defiled, Merton of the Movies and All in the Timing (Ovation nomination); for the Dance Company Diavolo: Catapult and Traajectorie; for the Denver Center Theatre Company: Henry IV Part I, The Three Sisters, The Night of the Iguana, Antigone. Additional design credits: The Ahkmatova Project, Amelia Lives, Telling Time, Othello, Trojan Women, Misalliance and Jenufa with Josef Svoboda.

Purchase on Amazon here.

Related Articles

Featured on Stage Door

Shoutouts, Classes & More

From This Author Stephi Wild