Carpentry Interns learn under the supervision of the Technical Director. This internship provides students with the opportunity to work alongside professional scenic carpenters while they develop and hone their skills in all areas of scenic construction. Opportunities may include executing scenic evaluations and shop drawings. Based on skill level and desire, interns may serve as assistant Technical Director for an appropriately sized production while supported and supervised by the Technical Director.
Technical Theatre Internships
PCPA offers technical theatre internships in multiple areas of theatre. PCPA’s mentor-apprentice approach to training provides unique experiences with theatre professionals both resident and guests. As an intern you will be training directly with professionals in their respective fields. Internships are for advanced students who wish to update, develop, and refine their skills in a dynamic and creative environment.
Benefits of a PCPA Internship
- Opportunity to gain practical experience in your chosen field.
- Gain experience in both an outdoor an indoor thrust stage.
- Taking time off before graduate school to train in a conservatory environment while mentoring less experienced students can help you prepare for graduate school.
- Join a network of over 50 years of alumni.
- Spend your summer or fall and spring in California.
- Winter/Spring interns are required to participate in a portfolio review each semester as a way of helping prepare and present a portfolio to the industry, in order to find employment after the internship.
- Having completed graduate school, build your professional portfolio.
- Prepare you for your next steps whether that be entering the industry or attending graduate school.
- Interns are required to be registered students of Allan Hancock College. The mandatory registration fees are covered.
- PCPA awards scholarships to a majority of the interns who are accepted. The IRS considers these scholarships taxable income.
- Interns will be informed of all required personal supplies before they accept the internship.
- The program does not offer a degree.
- Interns are scheduled, on average, for 40 hours per week with adjusted hours during tech periods.
- Internships can range between 3, 9 or 12 months with the possibility of more.
- Each department will have schedules that vary depending on the individual internship and the overall production schedule.
- Outside jobs can be discussed and coordinated with your department mentor and around conservatory schedules.
Enrollment is by interview only.
To be considered for an interview, PCPA’s Professional Internship applicants must submit an application via pcpa.org, a cover letter, a current resume listing previous theatre training, theater experience, and list three references.
Applicants may also be requested to submit relevant portfolio items. We will contact candidates that meet PCPA’s requirements to arrange an interview. Meeting minimum qualifications does not assure a candidate an interview.
Interviews are generally over the phone or via video conference.
Additional interviews occur at SETC, USITT, KCACTF region 7 and 8, and throughout the state of California. Exact dates and locations vary by department and time of year.
Although PCPA doesn’t offer housing, we can provide guidance on identifying housing options in the community and connect you with other students and interns who may be looking for roommates. While rental costs vary depending on individual needs and preferences, students can expect to pay around $600 to $1500 per month.
- Continue to develop and practice good work habits and professional level skills.
- Grow and refine you portfolio.
- Practice your craft
- Enjoy the great California weather
- Decide and plan your next steps in your career path.
- Have fun
Costume Design Assistant
Costume Design Assistants are supervised by the Costume Shop Manager, Assistant Costume Shop Manager, and the Resident Costume Designer. Candidates need to understand the design process and basic structure of production within the Costume Shop. Student interns will serve as Costume Design Assistants to the Costume Designer for main stage productions. Responsibilities vary according to the production, but will often include research, sourcing, tracking, attending meetings and fittings, and taking notes. All members of the Costume Department take part in cleaning/restocking of costumes, supplies, and equipment, and assisting with general shop maintenance. Depending on experience and capabilities, interns may be offered design opportunities in PCPA’s season. Basic sewing skills are desired.
Costume First Hand Technician
The First Hand intern is trained under the supervision of the Costume Shop Manager, the Assistant Costume Shop Manager, and the Cutter/Draper. Student assignments and schedules very depending on the assessed requirements of each production. Primary responsibilities include cutting, altering, and manufacturing various costume pieces, as well as tracking the progress of sewing notes. The First Hand will also assist in guiding Stitchers through costume builds and alterations. All members of the Costume Department take part in cleaning/restocking of costumes, supplies, and equipment, and assisting with general shop maintenance. Candidates should possess some exceptional stitching skills. Some tailoring experience is desirable
Costume Stitcher Technician (summer only)
The Stitcher interns are trained under the supervision of the Costume Shop Manager, the Assistant Costume Shop Manager, and the Cutter/Draper. Stitcher projects include sewing mock-ups, altering/restoring garments, pressing/preparing material, and hand-finishing garments. All members of the Costume Department take part in cleaning/restocking of costumes, supplies, and equipment, and assisting with general shop maintenance.
Costumes: Hair and Makeup Assistant
The Hair and Makeup Assistant Intern is trained under the supervision of the Costume Shop Manager, the Assistant Costume Shop Manager, and the Costume Designer. Primary responsibilities include fitting, alteration, and styling of wigs as well as assisting in the implementation of the hair and makeup designs. Specific assignments will vary depending on the needs of each production. All members of the Costume Department take part in cleaning/restocking of costumes, supplies, and equipment, and assisting with general shop maintenance. Ventilating experience is desirable.
Costumes Crafts Technician
The Costume Crafts Technician Intern is trained under the supervision of the Costume Shop Manager, the Assistant Costume Shop Manager, and the Costume Crafts Supervisor. The Costume Craft Technician participates in all aspects of the manufacturing, repair, or alteration of costume craft pieces, as well as tracking the progress of notes. All members of the Costume Department take part in cleaning/restocking of costumes, supplies, and equipment, and assisting with general shop maintenance. Knowledge and experience of safe shop practices are desirable.
Lighting Interns become an integral part of the PCPA Lighting Department learning and honing their craft under the supervision of the Lighting Director and Electrics Supervisor. An internship in lighting offers the opportunity to serve as the Lighting Design Assistant and/or Lead Electrician for a wide range of productions during the Winter/Spring Season. Within this framework, we work with interns to practice skills they have and expand their knowledge. What you don’t know, we can teach you. Projects you can anticipate being part of the internship include drafting lighting plots in Vectorworks, creating Lightwright paperwork, creating followspot sheets, hanging & circuiting lights, maintaining lights, build practicals, soldering, calling focus,and supervising student crews. Working closely with our lighting designers you will have the opportunity to observe, and participate in the process of bringing a large-scale design from concept to completion
Properties interns work under the supervision of the Properties Director. An internship in stage properties offers students the opportunity to create props for a wide range of productions working with a variety of materials including plastic, wood, fabric, and metal. Interns may serve as Prop Manager for a specific production, taking that production from design through rehearsal, into technical rehearsals as the chief liaison between the designer, the rehearsal process, and the build schedule in the prop shop.
PCPA’s Internship in scenic art serves as a bridge from educational theater experience to being paid to paint in theater and other forms in the entertainment industry. Scenic Art Interns will assist and be under the direct supervision of PCPA’S Resident Scenic Charge Artist as a part of a producing professional theater company. Under Charge Artist supervision, the Scenic Art Intern will learn to maintain the paint shop and its tools and equipment, track the use of paint and materials, keep the shop clean and organized, supervise and coordinate student work crews-in short learn managerial skills and learn and contribute to a smoothly running shop. The intern will also take the lead on the painting of some scenic elements or paint techniques and will go through the process of being a Scenic Charge Artist for one show. As Charge Artist, the intern will be guided through the process of calculating the budget, generating samples, and being responsible for the painting of an entire show to the specifications of the Scenic Designer.
Scenic Design Assistant
Scenic Design Interns learn under the supervision of the Resident Scenic Designer. Interns will increase their existing understanding of scenic design through collaboration with the resident scenic designer, additional staff designers, and guest designers. Projects include the production of bid drafting, rough models, final drafting, and final models under deadline circumstances. In addition, interns conduct period research, supervise student assistants, and attend meetings and rehearsals as needed. The interns will have opportunities to practice scenic painting and properties construction on a project-specific basis. Interns should expect to develop their skills with VectorWorks, AutoCAD, and SketchUp. Interns should possess good organizational skills as well as strong oral and written communication skills. Depending on experience and capabilities, interns may be offered design opportunities.
Sound interns will learn under the supervision of the sound director/designer and staff sound engineer. The sound interns will learn how to perform the duties of an assistant sound designer and the skillsets used in managing a shop and crew. The opportunities within the sound department for the sound interns may include installation, maintenance, and management of audio equipment for various productions, video monitoring equipment, clear comm infrastructure, and wireless microphone systems. The sound interns should anticipate learning about sound design, sound engineering, multitrack recording, monitor mixing, sound system trouble-shooting and repairs, generation of paperwork, and collaboration in the theatrical design process. A background in and knowledge of theatre is essential and experience with sound design and/or engineering is desirable. Based on experience and skillset, the sound interns may be offered design and/or mixing opportunities during the Winter/Spring Season.
Stage management interns will act as Assistant Stage Managers for main stage productions throughout the season. Stage Management interns are the Stage Managers for the conservatory rep productions during the spring season. The Outreach Intern will stage manage the educational outreach production during the winter/spring season. In addition to stage management duties, interns will assist in mentoring production assistants, participate in general office projects, and work with the Stage Management team as support for company events. Interns are eligible to join the Actors’ Equity Association’s Membership Candidacy Program and can accrue membership candidacy weeks if they so choose.