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Job Summary

NOTE:  Candidates must include a cover letter specifying their interest in and qualifications for this position.  The cover letter should be the first page of your resume and uploaded as one document.                                   

As a comprehensive performing arts school set in one of the world’s finest public institutions of higher education, the School of Music, Theatre & Dance (SMTD) is deeply engaged in the creation, practice, scholarship, and pedagogy of music, theatre, and dance. We aim to provide leadership, nationally and internationally, in all three fields. We assert and celebrate the value of the arts to the mission of the University. SMTD is committed to sharing values of diversity & inclusion in order to achieve and sustain excellence.


Basic Function and Responsibility
1) Manage the wardrobe operations of ten theatrical productions produced by University Productions 2) Teach basic sewing skills to Theatre 250 lab students 3) Stitch and provide associated costume-construction services when assigned

Duties to be Performed as Wardrobe Manager

  • Attend dress rehearsals, occasional production meetings, quick-change rehearsals, and run-throughs to organize wardrobe. Train and supervise student wardrobe crews in backstage procedures, quick-changes, load-in, strike, costume maintenance, and backstage hygiene.
  • Coordinate backstage schedule and wardrobe paperwork with shop manager, costume designer, stage management and wig/makeup personnel. Communicate wardrobe notes with designer and shop manager. Make recommendations on grading student wardrobe crews to faculty.
  • Provide instructions and training to wardrobe crew for the nightly care of each garment. Make sure that each performer has all their garments labeled properly and at hand. Produce wardrobe paperwork for the student crew and performers using proprietary inventory database (Wardrobe Wizard).
  • Supervise the transport of costumes during load-in and strike from the shop to theatre for the ten main stage productions. Manage the laundry, clean up, and dry cleaning of costumes after strike.
  • Teach Theatre 250 lab students basic skills of sewing (hand and machine), stitching, and pressing skills during labs, 8 hours per week.  Track student lab hours. Grade projects and give feedback to students. Prepare recommendations of grades for instructor of record.
  • Be on call during performances for wardrobe emergencies.
  • Occasionally assist with warehouse operations when necessary to meet production deadlines, as directed by costume shop manager.

Duties to be Performed as Secondary Stitcher

  • Fabricate costumes, costume elements, or costume crafts as assigned by the costume shop manager, according to the designs of the costume designer within the parameters of the production budget.
  • Sew, either by machine or hand, assigned costumes patterned by the cutter/drapers.
  • Alters assigned costumes that are rented, purchased, or pulled from stock.
  • Manages time effectively on each sewing project.
  • Coordinates and cooperates with other shop staff to meet production deadlines and to solve production problems. Thinks critically to find solutions to working with unusual materials. Helps to ensure the shop goal of having all assigned costumes ready for use at each first-dress rehearsa­l. ­
  • Maintains personal work area, including sewing machinery as necessary to keep work moving effectively.

 General Duties to be Performed

  • Assure safe work practices and compliance with MIOSHA regulations, especially regarding the proper use of solvents and related equipment.
  • Assist student designers on the process of realizing their designs (faculty will advise on aesthetics).
  • Assist with the specification and recommendation of new equipment or the modification of existing equipment to meet operational or special production needs.
  • Assist with occasional special projects and facility improvements.

Required Qualifications*

  • The ability to operate a variety of sewing machines with skill is necessary. The ability to operate an industrial steam iron is necessary.
    A Bachelor’s degree in costuming, or the equivalent combination of education and experience with a recognized professional company, is necessary.
  • Experience with professional wardrobe operations is necessary.
  • The ability to sew and to repair costumes is necessary.
  • Routinely moves equipment weighing up to 50 lbs in cluding heavy rolling wardrobe racks, and occasionally ascends/descends stairs.
  • This position involved traveling to various locations on / off campus to conduct business
  • Effective interpersonal skills; have the ability to work with a diverse range of individuals

Desired Qualifications*

  • Knowledge of costume history and garment type is desirable.
  • Experience with entering into a relational database is desirable.
  • Computer proficiency, preferably on Macintosh systems and FileMaker Pro, is desirable.
  • Some experience with wigs & make-up is desirable

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.