Volunteer

Volunteers will play an important role at Shenkman Arts Centre. The Volunteer Company will help to make the theatre more accessible to both patrons and artists by donating their services as members of the House Crew (ushers, ticket takers and greeters), the Stage Crew (lighting, sound and staging technicians for non-profit shows) and the Creative Resources Crew (providing hospitality to visiting artists and crews for Front & Centre presentations and assisting with some marketing projects).

Sign up to be a volunteer or contact the City of Ottawa Theatres Volunteer Program at 613-580-2424, ext. 16071 for more information.

The House Crew

This crew's mandate is to meet the public as ushers and ticket takers, to ensure the safety and security of our patrons and to act as tactful ambassadors of goodwill to the public attending performances. The House Crew volunteers are provided with formal training in basic and emergency procedures.

The House Crew positions are:

Usher / Ticket Taker

  • Prepares the front of house for the patrons.
  • Folds and distributes programmes and / or advertising inserts as required.
  • Prevents patrons from taking beverages, cameras and recording devices into the auditorium.
  • Scans patrons’ tickets.
  • Assists patrons to their seats in a safe manner.

Greeter

  • Greets patrons as they enter the theatre.
  • Assists patrons requiring special services (wheelchairs; use of elevator, etc.)
  • Directs patrons to the box office, coat check, rest rooms and seat locations.

Sign up to be a volunteer or contact the City of Ottawa Theatres Volunteer Program at 613-580-2424, ext. 16071 for more information. Please note that we have a minimum age requirement of 16 for the Creative Resources and House Crews and 18 for the Stage Crew. As well, we require a minimum commitment of 50 hours per season (September to June).

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The Stage Crew

A new Stage Crew volunteer doesn't need previous experience in theatre. Volunteers are provided with the training they require to work efficiently, competently and safely. Safety is of prime consideration when working on stage and is emphasized in all training sessions.

All new volunteers are required to participate in a series of basic training sessions. The first, Backstage 360º, is a required orientation that must be taken prior to the other courses. The remaining introductory courses cover Staging Principles, Introduction to Lighting and Introduction to Audio, and will qualify the volunteer to work as a stagehand and / or assistant. As the Stage Crew member gains experience with the crew, he or she may wish to acquire more specialized knowledge by participating in training sessions on advanced audio and lighting, rigging operation and stage management.

The basic crew commitment is eight hours per month. However, the amount of time a volunteer actually works in a month is dependent on his or her interest and the shows, training and activities scheduled in a month.

Crew members are provided with appropriate food and beverages should they work a shift that extends over normal meal periods.

After meeting training standards, volunteers will initially work as assistants (lighting, audio, flys, etc.) or stagehands. Progression to operators or lead hands is dependent on the volunteer experience and level of training.

The crew positions are as follows:

Audio Board Operator

  • Responsible for all sound components of a production.
  • Operates the mixing board, CD players, amplifiers and processing equipment.
  • Sets up and strikes microphones, speakers and intercom systems.

Lighting Board Operator

  • Co-ordinates all lighting aspects using state of the art equipment.
  • Operates the lighting control board during set-ups, rehearsals and performances.
  • Supervises and assists in the hanging and focusing of lighting instruments.
  • Selects colours and programs computerized lighting board.

Fly Operator

  • Oversees the safe execution of the fly system.
  • Operates the main curtains and vertical set changes.

Stagehand

  • Provides production assistance.
  • Assists with the unloading and loading of trucks.
  • Assists with assembling and striking sets, risers, platforms and other furnishings.
  • Assists with scenery changes during rehearsals and performances.

Stage Manager

  • Coordinates the staging elements and communications between the technicians and performers.

Assistant

  • Provides assistance to fly, audio and lighting operators.

Sign up to be a volunteer or contact the City of Ottawa Theatres Volunteer Program at 613-580-2424, ext. 16071 for more information. Please note that we have a minimum age requirement of 16 for the Creative Resources and House Crews and 18 for the Stage Crew. As well, we require a minimum commitment of 50 hours per season (September to June).

Creative Resources Crew

The Creative Resources crew provides hospitality to our visiting performers and guests in a professional manner that enhances the image of Shenkman Arts Centre within the performing arts industry and throughout Canada. This involves working with staff to plan the menus, shopping for the ingredients, preparing the meals and serving them to the artists.

As well, they assist in some marketing projects such as customer service surveys and post show activities.

A Creative Resources Crew member’s responsibilities are as follows:

  • Attends monthly crew meetings.
  • Plans, prepares, serves and cleans up meals for artists and crews for Front & Centre presentations.
  • Promotes the theatre and its activities to the public.
  • Assists at theatre events.
  • Assists at Volunteer Information Sessions.

Sign up to be a volunteer or contact the City of Ottawa Theatres Volunteer Program at 613-580-2424, ext. 16071 for more information. Please note that we have a minimum age requirement of 16 for the Creative Resources and House Crews and 18 for the Stage Crew. As well, we require a minimum commitment of 50 hours per season (September to June).

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