Technical Director

Rochester Institute of Technology | Rochester, NY

Posted Date 2/13/2024

Technical Director


College of Liberal Arts

CLA-School of Performing Arts

Job Summary

The School of Performing Arts (SPA) Technical Director is responsible for all technical elements associated with SPA-produced theatrical, dance, and music performances, including lighting and projections, sound, set design and construction, and props and costumes, among other elements. The Technical Director personally oversees the set-up, execution, and tear down of all SPA-related events and productions. The position works closely with the Assistant Manager for Operations and Events in SPA, Technical Director of NTID’s Department of Performing Arts and the Technical Operations Manager of the SHED, and campus partners such as RIT Tech Crew, Facilities Management Services, and University Production Services. The position reports to the Director of Operations for the School of Performing Arts.

The Technical Director (TD) is required to safely coordinate all technical elements and operations for School of Performing Arts events across campus including rigging, lighting, sound, set construction, projections, props, and costumes. This position also provides mentorship, supervision, and training of students engaged in technical theatre opportunities offered through the School of Performing Arts. This includes the development of student crews who support theatre, dance, and music performances throughout the year. Upon opening, this position is also responsible for the training and overall safety of all individuals involved in the use of the technical assets of the Music Performance Theater, along with ensuring safety throughout School of Performing Arts productions and performances.

The position requires the ability to work safely around power tools, on ladders and lifts, and with electricity. The TD must be comfortable with/capable of lifting up to 50 lbs, climbing ladders and being at heights of up to 50 ft. The role involves overseeing and being active in working conditions and spaces that must adhere to all OSHA, ANSI, and ASME guidelines. Night and weekend availability is required to provide event technical support and operation in lighting, sound, scenic elements, projections, and/or other areas as needed.

Now in its second year of existence, the School of Performing Arts is responsible for programming the performing arts facilities within the Student Hall for Exploration and Development (SHED), including the Sklarsky Glass Box Theater. In addition, RIT has recently broken ground on the Music Performance Theater (MPT) which features a 750-concert hall. As such, SPA is in need of qualified and capable experts to support and manage the productions and performances presented in these new and forthcoming state-of-the-art venues.

We are actively seeking a diversity of talented and qualified individuals dedicated to promoting and valuing diversity, pluralism and inclusion.

Job Responsibilities

Planning and Scheduling

  • Serve on the SPA/NTID joint season scheduling committee to develop the annual production schedule and plan.
  • Coordinate production meetings, identification of designers and other staff.
  • Plan detailed production schedules in coordination with the directors, design team, and Production and Programming Manager.
  • Supervise production schedule related to implementation and support for events and performances in various RIT performance spaces.
  • In conjunction with the Director of Operations and production directors, determine the necessary technical support, such as lighting, sound, staging, and special requirements necessary for events and performances presented at the specific campus facility in advance of production dates.
  • Advise production designers and directors on the technical specifications and safe usage of technical equipment required for the individual productions.
  • Supervise and assist with set and stage construction and management, requiring a knowledge of scenic design, as well as tools and equipment needed.
  • Monitor tech week rehearsals, supervise and assist in the technical aspects of mounting of the shows.
  • Work with guest artists, artist management, tour management, and community organization to provide technical expertise and support for performances by external groups and performers in campus venues.
  • Review and approve technical riders provided by guest artists to ensure RIT can meet requirements of touring groups and performers.

Event Preparation and Support

  • Supervise the use of lighting, sound, carpentry/shop, and projection equipment, and support the use and maintenance of campus performing arts facilities, including scene shops, costume shops, and prop storage areas.
  • Provide expertise on all technical aspects of School of Performing Arts productions; specifications and usage of technical equipment required for individual productions, including lights, sound, projections, set, props and costumes.
  • In collaboration with the respective campus venue managers, determine the necessary rigging and structural support requirements for lighting, sound, scenic elements and projections involved in SPA productions and events.
  • Supervise and lead scenic and set construction and management for SPA productions and events.
  • Oversee and support the projection and light hang/focus for all SPA productions.
  • Oversee, organize, and manage production strikes at close of the run of the shows.
  • Serve as lighting and sound engineer for most SPA performances and productions, or train students to be capable of the same.
  • Attend staff and production meetings, as well as technical and dress rehearsals, and including other rehearsals as needed and upon request.
  • Collaborate with guest designers to have designs developed and approved on schedule; vet the designs for budgets, feasibility and safety; translate designs (elevations/models) into working drawings for construction.

Administrative, Budgeting & Financial

  • Create and develop new standard operating and safety policies and procedures.
  • Build systems and processes for use of and optimization of operations
  • Provide consultation and advise with campus leaders on the use of space/equipment/productions
  • Develops, oversees, and supervises plans for technical operations services and productions.
  • Plans and manages capital inventory and owns budget/lifecycle forecasting to strategically determine needs.
  • Make recommendations regarding capital purchases of and upgrades to technical equipment for campus venues informed by and to serve School of Performing Arts needs.
  • Consult with the Director of Operations, design team, and faculty directors on the preparation and control of production budgets; maintain inventory and order specialized supplies in collaboration with the SPA operations team.
  • Control costs for labor and materials to stay within the approved budget, provide timely reports of all expenditures, hires, and employee hours to the Director of Operations, School Director and appropriate staff members.
  • Ensure various requirements for fire, security, and building safety needs in conjunction with Global Risk Management, University Legal Affairs, and Environmental Health and Safety departments connected to SPA productions.

Equipment and Facilities

  • Provide recommendations/budgetary proposals for future facility improvements and equipment purchases.
  • Monitor and report on the condition of equipment including lighting, sound, and tools; if necessary, arrange for the repair and replacement within budgetary constraints; perform preventive maintenance on SPA equipment.
  • Operate, maintain, and safeguard the technical assets of SPA, including supervising the use of lighting, carpentry/shop, and sound equipment, and the use and maintenance of stage facilities.
  • Perform minor repairs and preventative maintenance on equipment and maintain inventory of necessary supplies.
  • Provide technical support on nights and weekends when rentals, partnerships and other external programming occurs.
  • Configure, set-up, maintain and operate theatrical lighting, projections and sound systems for theater, dance, music and other productions and events.
  • Adhere to strong planning, organizational, communication, teaching and management skills as well as develop knowledge of tools and techniques for construction and basic engineering.
  • Support Director of Operations in creating and enforcing in-house policies and standards for both house crew and visiting crew members as well as designers and other technicians working in the theatre.
  • Coordinate builds and load-ins so rehearsals can safely move on site as scheduled and technical rehearsals can be fully productive
  • Prepare and supervise set builds: engineer and draft as needed; schedule and hire labor; plan and order materials and supplies
  • Provide technical production expertise during planning and construction of Music Performance Theater and, upon opening, oversee costume and scene shops and all back of house areas of MPT on behalf of SPA.


  • Supervise and mentor teams of technical theatre students and Performing Arts Scholars supporting productions with lighting, sound, scenic, projection, and costume design elements.
  • Assist with the training and assignment of students and technical staff related to individual shows & events, including safety orientation, technical requirements, and other areas of facility operations.
  • Assist in recruiting, training and assignment of volunteer technical staff for individual shows, including orienting them on safety, technical characteristics and other areas of facility operations.
  • Collaborate with the faculty instructor of Theatre Ensemble to appropriately assign students to various backstage support crews. Oversee and instruct these students in their technical assignments.
  • Mentor students on concepts and lessons about technical theatre.

Required Qualifications


  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience
  • 3 years of experience in scenic design, technical theater production, concert production, large venue production and coordination, or related experience.
  • Must be willing and able to work flexible hours/days reflective of a production schedule of a theater which includes a variety of hours including evenings and weekends.
  • Must have a thorough understanding of all aspects of technical theatre, including set construction, lighting equipment, rigging, projections and sound.
  • Demonstrated implementation of successful safety policies and procedures, including knowledge and experience with OSHA, ANSI, AMSE regulations.
  • Strong leadership skills and autonomous decision-making abilities, often during high pressure situations, are a mandatory.
  • Operation of a computer and assigned software. Proficiency in Microsoft Word and Excel and online meeting platforms such as Zoom essential.
  • Background in event production (preferably both operations and engineering) and a thorough knowledge of the current tools and technologies including Network and IT infrastructures for Audio and Lighting workflows.
  • Ability to establish priorities, work independently, and proceed with objectives without supervision.
  • Ability to interact with colleagues, supervisors and customers face to face.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills that will include public speaking and presentations.
  • Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability to build strong, collaborative, and long-lasting relationships for the betterment of the Institution.
  • Training and experience serving in a management role in a production department at a theater, live event venue, or a related field.
  • Proven experience in handling production and design processes on large scale productions.
  • Demonstrated creative judgment, excellent problem-solving skills and detail oriented.
  • Strong ability to lead a team, delegate and communicate effectively across multiple departments and with dynamic people.
  • Ability to meet deadlines and adapt to changing priorities as well as attend to numerous projects concurrently.
  • Knowledge and experience in site design, event layout, equipment configuration and function, staffing requirements and capability, and integration of all related services for event planning, staging and execution of events.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in a theatrical or scenic design-related field.
  • In-depth knowledge of Audio signal processing systems.
  • In-depth knowledge of lighting and projection systems both conventional and intelligent as well as analog and network-based control.
  • Experience supervising a full-service scene shop including wood working, rigging of all types, welding and automation, and understanding of AutoCAD/Vectorworks
  • Working knowledge of IATSE, AFM, USA, SDC, AEA and LORT collective bargaining agreements.
  • Certifications in CM Lodestar Motor Mechanics, ETCP Rigging, Dante Level III, OSHA 10 Hour Training
  • Knowledge of Deaf culture, American Sign Language (ASL), or willingness to learn.
  • Prior experience working in a higher education setting

Required Minimum Education Level

Bachelors or Equivalent Experience

Work Location

Henrietta Campus — 100%

Wage Band


FLSA Category


Employment Category


Required Application Documents

Cover Letter, Curriculum Vitae or Resume, List of References

What do we believe at RIT?

Rochester Institute of Technology is a diverse and collaborative community of engaged, socially conscious, and intellectually curious minds. Through creativity and innovation, and an intentional blending of technology, the arts and design, we provide exceptional individuals with a wide range of academic opportunities, including a leading research program and an internationally recognized education for deaf and hard-of-hearing students. We are dedicated to building a diverse community, one where employees feel a sense of belonging, and are valued for their contributions and the perspectives they bring.

As a member of the RIT community, you'll receive a comprehensive employee benefits package that offers multiple options and access to additional employment advantages. You can tailor your benefit elections to meet your needs (affordable medical/dental/vision benefits; paid vacation/sick time/retirement saving plan with exceptional employer match; and tuition assistance for you and your family, to name a few).

How To Apply

In order to be considered for this position, you must apply for it at: Click the link for search openings and in the keyword search field, enter the title of the position or the BR number.

Additional Details

In compliance with NYS's Pay Transparency Act, the salary range for this position is listed above. Rochester Institute of Technology considers factors such as (but not limited to) scope and responsibilities of the position, candidate's work experience, education/training, key skills, internal peer equity, as well as, market and organizational considerations when extending an offer. The hiring process for this position may require a criminal background check and/or motor vehicle records check. Any verbal or written offer made is contingent on satisfactory results, as determined by Human Resources. RIT does not discriminate. RIT promotes and values diversity, pluralism and inclusion in the work place. RIT provides equal opportunity to all qualified individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, age, marital status, sex, gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, veteran status or disability in its hiring, admissions, educational programs and activities. RIT provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities under the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the New York Human Rights Law, or similar applicable law. If you need reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please contact the Human Resources office at 585-475-2424 or email your request to Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Hourly/Salary Minimum


Hourly/Salary Maximum


Employment Type
Full Time

Share this job