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USITT Webinars: Forum@Four Series of Curated Sessions

Stage Directions • Industry News • April 6, 2020

USITT is pleased to offer a brand new webinar series, Forum@Four as a way to provide those in the technical theatre and live entertainment industries with online education during this difficult time that would normally have been brought to you at our Conference and Stage Expo in Houston. This series of webinars kicks off Monday, April 6 at 4pm EDT.

This new offering, however, is not meant to replace the Conference in any way, so we are holding these webinars FREE of charge for anyone who may be interested, not just USITT members. Forum@Four will take place from Monday through Thursday at 4pm EDT, via the popular online conference application, Zoom.

The Forum@Four series is essentially taking a selection of curated sessions and translating them to a virtual environment. These webinars are brought to you by the various USITT commissions and other industry experts, and presenters will be available during the sessions to answer questions that participants may have.

Similar to the New@Noon series, the Forum@Four will be available on Zoom, however they will NOT be streamed simultaneously on Facebook Live. To watch on Zoom, click the link below for the session you wish to take part in to register in advance.

View the latest scheduled webinars and their descriptions below. More will be added throughout the month of April as information is gathered.


Monday, April 6: Contract Negotiation Strategies for Lessening the Stage Management Gender Wage Gap
Webinar description: While there are legitimate reasons whereby one person should rightfully earn more than another, gender should not be among them. And yet, a recent study of college graduates[1] found that, on average, 57 percent of identifying males negotiated contracts upon offer compared to only 8 percent of identifying females. As a former internationally-touring GSM turned Director of Operations and Producer, Terrence Williams brings a unique perspective, having sat on both sides of the negotiating table and having offered numerous contracts to crew members around the world. Join him as he takes you through some common deal structures, ways in which gender wage gaps form in the entertainment industry, and both common and uncommon negotiating strategies for employees. Attendees will learn to form their own personal strategy for wage growth, as well as gain an understanding of the behind-the-scene dynamics governing wages within the industry.

[1] Study conducted by economists Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever in their book Women Don’t Ask: Negotiation and the Gender Divide

Presenter: Terrence R. Williams is an internationally-touring General Stage Manager having worked with such distinguished productions as The Illusionists, Circus 1903, Absinthe and Illusionist David Copperfield, among others. Terrence has helmed four Australian National Tours as well as multiple tours through Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, Singapore, and various parts of the Middle East.  His work has been seen on The Late Show with David Letterman, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, The Late Late Show with James Corden, the Rachael Ray Show, the TODAY Show, and America’s Got Talent. Currently overseeing 13 live touring productions worldwide, he has turned his focus towards stage management education and leadership training within the industry.

Zoom advanced registration link: Click here


Tuesday, April 7: If you can’t find it, you can’t use it – Costume Inventory Resources
Webinar description: Only you can turn the stage from a dark, silent floor to a dazzling scene. But if you can’t find the right costume, prop or setpiece, microphone or lights – how will you do it? You don’t want to make or buy everything again. In this session, you will see the benefits of creating an inventory of all your properties. This presentation will help you learn what you need, write a plan, set a budget, create a shopping list and timeline for starting your inventory project. Whether you have thousands of costumes, hundreds of pieces of sound equipment, a warehouse of furniture or the world’s large gobo collection — creating and maintaining an inventory will help you.

Presenter: Margaret Messick is the owner and database designer for Costume Inventory Resources. She has been designing database applications for over 30 years and has had a love of sewing since her teens. In 2010, she combined these interests to create the Theatre Inventory Database. Now with customers in 26 countries and over 800 installations of her software she has helped hundreds of theatres and schools manage their inventory.

Zoom advanced registration link: Click here


Wednesday, April 8: 3D Modeling for Theatre & Exhibit Design
Webinar description: Journey into the exciting world of 3D Visualization utilizing Trimble Sketchup Software.

Video Link: Registrants are encouraged to view this short video prior to the workshop. It includes a number of examples that will be referred to during the presentation. After the workshop, attendees are encouraged to bookmark the link for reference.

Presenter: Robert Mark Morgan is a Teaching Professor at Washington University in St. Louis. He has designed professionally in the areas of theatre, film, museum, and theme park venues. Avatar the Exhibition (museum exhibit) originally designed for Experience Music Project in Seattle toured in the U.S. and Canada for three years. His designs have been seen onstage nationally at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, Asolo Repertory Theatre (Sarasota, FL), Indiana Repertory Theatre, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, The Old Globe, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Studio Arena (Buffalo, NY), Children’s Theatre Company (Minneapolis, MN), Cleveland Play House, the MUNY – St. Louis, San Jose Repertory Theatre, Denver Center Theatre Company, Alliance Theatre (Atlanta), Barrington Stage, Marin Theatre Company, Magic Theatre, and American Conservatory Theatre (ACT) in San Francisco. Current projects include Into the Breeches at Cleveland Play House (Sept. 2019) and Asolo Repertory Theatre (Feb. 2020).

Zoom advanced registration link: Click here


Thursday, April 9: Lighting Large Scale Productions
Webinar description: From the theatre to Times Square and from the studio to a stadium, how do you navigate and manage a rig with 500+ fixtures? This intermediate-level session will delve into the process of designing, engineering, and managing large scale productions from start to finish.


  • Dylan Bomgardner — (Moderator) Lighting Designer, Available Light
  • Robb Jibson — Multi-discipline Designer
  • Steven Rosen — Founder and Creative Director of Available Light
  • Travis Shupe — Freelance Lighting Programmer, Electrician, and Lighting Director
  • Jordan Yeo — President, Jordan Yeo Production Services, LLC

Zoom advanced registration link: Click here

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