Alliance Theatre Names Shaina Pierce the First Stage Management Fellow
The goal of the new fellowship program is to create opportunities for BIPOC MFA Stage Management graduates, leading to a more diverse field of stage managers.
Shaina Pierce is a recent graduate of the University of Alabama and has worked with the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Cloverdale Playhouse, The Montgomery Ballet, and Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre.
After conducting a thorough national search, the Alliance Theatre is pleased to announce that Shaina Pierce has been chosen as the inaugural Stage Management Fellow for the Alliance Theatre, beginning August 1, 2021, and continuing until the end of our 2021/22 Season.
Shaina Pierce is a recent graduate of The University of Alabama and received her MFA in stage management. While at UA, some of her credits include The Merchant of Venice, Intimate Apparel, and Legally Blonde (int. covid). She has taught and mentored undergraduate stage managers and enjoys learning as much as she does sharing her artistry. Previous credits include Comedy of Errors, Cinderella, and Disney's The Little Mermaid at The Alabama Shakespeare Festival. She stage-managed The Last Five Years and The Boys Next Door at the Cloverdale Playhouse. She has also worked for the Montgomery Ballet's The Nutcracker and stage-managed Alabama Repertory Dance Theatre at UA. Shaina has been a part of numerous staged readings as well as zoom recorded readings.
As a Stage Management Fellow, Pierce will spend her first year of post-graduate school in residence working as a contributing member of the stage management department at the Alliance Theatre. She will work as the stage manager or assistant stage manager primarily on the Coca-Cola Stage, including the new version of a holiday favorite A Christmas Carol; a co-production with another regional theatre; and a commercially enhanced, world premiere musical with a Broadway-experienced creative team. Pierce will be presented with opportunities to network within the Atlanta theatre community, potentially adding to our collective stage manager pool should she choose Atlanta as her producing home. Additionally, Pierce will develop a network of mentors inside and outside the Alliance while building a resume of top-of-field work experience.
“I'm thrilled and excited for this opportunity to work with such a talented group of people at the Alliance Theatre,” Pierce says. “This opportunity means the world to me. I look forward to learning more about stage managing at a higher level and getting back into the theatre!”
ABOUT THE STAGE MANAGEMENT FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
The stage manager is the actor’s advocate, show’s guardian, and production’s liaison for all aspects of the production. They ensure the director’s vision is realized while creating a safe working environment for all. Too often, the stage manager is a white person even on a production where the majority of the cast and creative team are Black, Indigenous, or persons of color (BIPOC). After a year of intentionally listening to the needs of our BIPOC artist community, a through line surfaced: “I wish there were more stage managers sitting at the table who looked like me.” We must correct this imbalance not only at the Alliance Theatre but as an industry if we want our productions and staff to reflect the communities we serve. The Alliance is linking arms with stage management graduate programs, creating a pipeline of full-time work for emerging BIPOC stage managers to diversify the field: the Stage Management Fellowship Program. To apply, candidates must 1) identify as a BIPOC theatre maker, 2) be an MFA in Stage Management student in their final year or have graduated from an MFA in Stage Management program in the past 3 years, and 3) be willing to relocate to Atlanta, Georgia for the fellowship. A diverse panel of professional stage managers and theatre leaders selected the final candidate, and the panelists will also serve as a resource to the Fellow during their time in residence.