4th Edition

Stagecraft Fundamentals A Guide and Reference for Theatrical Production

By Rita Kogler Carver Copyright 2023
    636 Pages 704 Color Illustrations
    by Focal Press

    636 Pages 704 Color Illustrations
    by Focal Press

    636 Pages 704 Color Illustrations
    by Focal Press

    Stagecraft Fundamentals, Fourth Edition, is an entry-level how-to guide and reference on backstage theatre, covering every aspect of basic theatre production.

    The history of stagecraft, safety precautions, lighting, costumes, scenery, special effects, career planning tips, and more are discussed, illustrated by beautiful full-color images that display step-by-step procedures. This fourth edition improves upon the last, featuring a new chapter on Costume Crafts, which includes information on millinery, shoes, fabric dyeing, fabric modification, distressing, masks, armor, body padding, and accessories. Also included is an expanded discussion on sound, props, rigging, safety, production management, and projection design, new information on digital theatre, new end of chapter exercises, additional information on US/UK standards, and an emphasis on diversity and inclusion. Each chapter features exercises, discussion questions, and study words to help the teacher and student review the content before moving on to the next topic.

    Stagecraft Fundamentals, Fourth Edition, is the must-have introductory theatre production book for Stagecraft, Technical Theatre, and Theatre Production courses.

    A companion website (www.StagecraftFundamentals.com) features additional articles and information, downloadable images and paperwork, chapter quizzes, and an instructor’s manual.

    Part 1: History and Art  1. Where We’ve Been and Where We’re Going  2. It’s All About Collaboration  3. Making It Visual  4. Black and White Are Colors Too!  5. Creating the Stage Picture  Part 2: Safety and Scenery  6. Safety First!  7. Setting It All Up  8. How to Get It Done  9. Deck the Halls  10. A Little Dab Will Do Ya  Part 3: Rigging, Lighting, and Sound  11. Hanging by a Thread  12. House to Half . . .  13. Is This Thing On?  Part 4: Costume and Makeup  14. All Dressed Up with Someplace to Go  15. Accessories and Other Stuff by Denise Wallace-Spriggs  16. Put on a Happy Face  Part 5: Video and Special Effects  17. Projections, LED, Screens, and ContentOh My  18. The Magic Behind the Curtain  Part 6: Management, Touring, and Careers  19. Warning, Standby, Go!  20. Taking the Show on the Road  21. What’s Next?


    Rita Kogler Carver is an Emmy Award-winning lighting designer and a sought-after speaker, lecturer, and writer. She is the co-owner of BearFly Designs LLC and holds an MFA from New York University. Rita has worked on Broadway, off-Broadway, and in regional theatre, opera, and dance, and is affiliated with the International Association of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 829 and National Association of Broadcast Employees Local 16.

    Praise for Stagecraft Fundamentals

    "Stagecraft Fundamentals is beautifully illustrated throughout, and the profusion of color on every page gives this textbook the appearance of a coffee table book. The writing is clear and personal, which should be very appealing to students. Rita Carver covers all aspects of theatre production from scenery, to lighting, to an actor's makeup. Her close ties to the New York theatre scene gives this book a special insight into the professional world, one that goes well beyond what is found in most college textbooks."

    John Holloway, Professor in the Theatre Department at the University of Kentucky and President of the International Association of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) Local 346

    "What a great idea! Thank heavens someone is doing this for students at that impressionable age. That has been one of my mantras—education of teachers and students on the use of scenic materials. The teachers don't have enough time in college to learn and do everything they have to teach. Most get thrown into the theatre area by default and struggle with designing/building/painting the scenery."

    Jenny Knott, Rosco

    "This text has tempted me to return to teaching with a textbook for the first time in seven years. The language is both accessible and informal yet the text goes a long way in debunking some of the typical jargon that may alienate students just getting into the field, or trying it out for the first time. The illustrations (the text is full of them) coupled with the stories reinforce the fundamental information being conveyed."

    John Paul Devlin, Associate Professor of Theatre at Saint Michael's College

    "Beautifully written! The author has succeeded in relaying technical theatre information without being too technical and putting the reader to sleep. I read three sentences and instantly knew this book was for me and the way I teach. When I think back on the insufferable intro to tech theatre books I had to read, I feel cheated I didn't have this one as a student. I will be using this text in my class!"

    Rob Napoli, Designer and Technical Director at Penn State University, Berks Campus

    "A few months ago a friend excitedly told me about a new book written by Rita Kogler Carver called Stagecraft Fundamentals. My first impression was, wow! it's big. My second impressions was, wow! it's beautiful. This book makes an excellent classroom resource or a reference book for theatre professionals. I know I will keep mine close and hand and reference it often."

    Richard Cadena, author of Electricity for Entertainment Electricians & Technicians and Automated Lighting: The Art and Science of Moving Light, and freelance lighting designer 

    "I can't thank you enough for Stagecraft Fundamentals. I have been teaching stagecraft since 1976 and you have saved me from the nightmare of writing a text to suit my class needs. After two semesters with your text, I have found that I had more time to develop the skills necessary within the classroom than before. The humor that you have infused in the book has enticed my students to read on. That alone makes this text invaluable."

    Meta Lasch, Assistant Professor, West Liberty University