A props manager supervises the building, making and buying of the props needed for a production.
A props manager looks after the theatre's supply of props. If you work with props, you must also make sure the props are well-maintained for the duration of the show, and take charge of any repairs or adjustments that come up in the course of the show's run.
This requires coordinating many different people, and working with designers, carpenters, artists and other staff in the props department.
The work can also involve:
- managing the props budget
- making a list of the props needed for an upcoming show
- ordering, or going out to source, new props
- making sure cast members know how to operate or care for props
- supervising other staff in the props department
- sitting in on rehearsals to see whether any changes need to be made to props.
How do I get into props management?
If you're interested in working with props, you probably have an interest in design. You might be good with your hands or enjoy making things.
There is no 'correct' career path to follow to get into props work. Props management is also about managing people. Asking existing managers how they got their jobs is also a good idea.
Don't be shy about approaching local theatres or theatre groups for work experience in the props department. You could also try volunteering or asking for work experience in shops or warehouses which sell theatre supplies.