Sarofim School of Fine Arts

Technical Rehearsals (T)

Technical rehearsals consist of a three-part sequence—paper tech, dry tech, and wet tech. Normal rehearsal hours do not apply to tech or dress rehearsals.

Paper Tech

Paper tech consists of a meeting between the director, stage manager, lighting designer, and sound designer. Their assistants are welcome to attend. In this meeting, the designers and director tell the stage manager how they would like the cues to go. This takes at least 1 hour depending on the size of the show, and must be completed in preparation for dry tech. Designers must bring completed copies of their cue sheets.

Dry Tech

Dry tech is a rehearsal with full tech but without actors. This is a chance for the stage manager to become comfortable with cue sequences, and for the director to give feedback on the new technical elements. The director, stage manager, lighting designer, sound designer, their assistants, running crew, microphone technicians (if needed), and all board operators are required to attend. Dry tech usually consists of a cue-to-cue rehearsal (skipping over sections of the script that do not contain cues). Time allotted for dry tech is about twice the show’s running time.

Wet Tech

Wet tech is similar to dry tech except it includes actors. With all of the new elements present onstage, it is unlikely that there will be time to run the show as a whole. Actors do not wear costumes during wet tech, so makeup and wardrobe crews are not called. Time allotted for wet tech is about three times the show’s running time. Actors should wear darker clothes—white or light colored clothing make it difficult to judge the composition of a lighting cue due to exaggerated light reflection.

Headset Etiquette

Jones Theater and Alma Thomas have control booths and permanent communications systems. Usually there are 4-6 people on headset during shows. The exceptions to this are shows in small spaces like Heather Hall or Caldwell Carvey Foyer where crew are too close to the audience to be able to speak to each other. For shows in Jones or Alma Thomas, the Stage Manager, at least one Assistant Stage Manager, the Light Board Operator, the Sound Board Operator, the Sound Mixer (if applicable), and the follow spot operator (if applicable) have their own headsets for communication.

Headsets must be checked before each show. Keep headset packs away from cell phones since it can cause static during the show. Do not leave headsets on the floor. Conversation must be kept at a minimum to avoid distraction and confusion. By the same token, only the Stage Manager is allowed to keep their headset mic on throughout the show—everyone else should turn off their mic when they are not speaking to someone on headset.

The Stage Manager is responsible for setting the headset vernacular that they prefer. Here are some examples:

SM: Warning light cue 1.
Light op: Thank you.
SM: House lights to half...go.
Light op: Complete. (optional)
Follow spot: Andrea on headset.
SM: Standby sound cue B.
Sound op: Sound. (or Standing)
SM: Cat to Alexis.
ASM: Alexis here.
SM: Thank you Andrea

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