Salaries For Stage Manager


Stage managers are an important part of the performing arts industry. They are responsible for the smooth running of the shows, organizing everything from rehearsals to live performances. The production manager works closely with the director, actors, designers and technical team to ensure flawless execution of every part of the production. Despite their importance, stage managers often work long hours, deal with stressful situations and are  poorly paid compared to other occupations in the industry. Let us see about the salaries for Stage Manager.

Salaries For Stage Manager

Salaries for Stage Manager

The national average salaries for stage manager is $64,450 per year. However this can definitely vary due to factors like location, experience etc.

In this blog we  discuss the salaries of show managers. We look at a variety of factors that affect stage managers’ salaries, including geographic location, type of employer, years of experience, level of education and type of production. We  also look at the average salaries for stage managers in different industries and parts of the country. 

Factors affecting salaries of Stage Manager

Here are some examples of how different types of employers may offer different salary ranges: 

  • Commercial Productions: Stage managers who work for commercial productions, such as Broadway shows or major touring productions, may earn higher salaries than those who work for a non-profit organization . theaters or in regional theaters. These productions tend to have larger budgets and may offer more generous compensation packages. 
  • Non-profit theaters: Non-profit theaters, on the other hand, tend to have smaller budgets and may not  offer as high  a salary as commercial productions. However, many nonprofit theaters offer other benefits, such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off. 
  • Educational Institutions: Decorators working in educational institutions, such as universities or high schools, may earn lower wages on average than those working in the commercial or nonprofit sectors. However, working in education can offer other benefits, such as a regular schedule and the opportunity to work with students. 
  • Freelance: Many stage managers work as freelancers, meaning they are hired on a project-by-project basis rather than  for a specific employer. Freelance stage managers may earn higher hourly wages, but may not have the same job security or benefits as employees employed by a separate employer.

Average Salaries of Stage Manager

The average salary for a director can vary depending on several factors. Here are some  average salaries for actors, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS): 

The national average salary for stage managers is $64,450 per year.

The average salary for a stage manager in the video industries is $98,630 per year.

The average salary for a stage manager in theaters is $64,780 per year.

The average salary for a stage manager in sports is $63,020 per year.

The average salary for a stage manager in educational services, such as colleges and universities is $53,620 per year.

Job outlook for Stage managers

Here are some examples of how different types of productions can affect salaries: 

  • Commercial Productions: Stage managers working on commercial productions such as Broadway shows or national tours can earn higher salaries than managers working on smaller productions. This is because commercial productions tend to have larger budgets and can offer higher compensation packages to their staff. 
  • Noncommercial Production: Stage managers working on noncommercial productions, such as community theater productions or educational productions, may earn lower wages than directors working on commercial productions. This is often due to smaller production budgets and less available resources. 
  • Union: The Production Union  can also affect an actor’s salary. For example, acting managers who are members of the Actors’ Capital Association may be entitled to higher wages and fringe benefits than non-union members. 
  • Complexity of the production: The complexity of the production can also affect the salary of the actor. Productions with more complex staging, technical requirements or larger casts may require more work from the actor and  therefore offer a higher salary to compensate for the increased workload.

Strategies to increase salary

Here are some strategies actors can use to increase their salary: 

  • Gain Experience: One of the best ways to increase an actor’s salary is to gain more experience in the industry. As stage managers grow in experience, they become even more valuable to productions, which can lead to salary increases. 
  • Obtain additional certifications or training: Stage managers can also increase the value of productions by obtaining additional certifications or training. For example, knowing technical theater or learning  new software  can make a director more versatile and marketable, which can lead to a salary increase. 
  • Join a Union: Joining a union, such as the Actors’ Equity Association, can give actors more bargaining power in salary negotiations. Unions often set a minimum wage for their members and  may also offer other benefits such as health insurance and retirement plans. 
  • Networking with other industry professionals: Networking with other industry professionals, such as directors or producers, can also help actors increase their salaries. Building relationships with key decision makers can lead to more job opportunities and higher salaries. 
  • Negotiations: Finally, stage managers can increase wages by negotiating with employers. It is important that stage managers  understand their value and be prepared to defend themselves in salary negotiations. They should research average salaries based on their industry and location, and be prepared to make a strong case for why they deserve a higher salary based on their skills and experience.


Overall, an actor’s salary can vary based on several factors such as industry, location, experience and education. It is important for stage managers to understand these factors and protect themselves in salary negotiations. Stage managers can increase their salaries and build successful careers in the field by gaining more experience, obtaining additional certifications or training, joining a union, networking with other professionals in the field, and negotiating with employers. Ultimately, the best way to earn a higher salary as a director is to continually develop your skills, build professional relationships, and seek opportunities to grow and succeed in the industry.

Salaries For Stage Manager

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