A Day in the Life


production Intern Yuta Kataoka

Production Intern

My name is Yuta Kataoka and I am a senior at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. I am majoring in Liberal Arts Multidisciplinary Studies, concentrating in Dance Production Management and Hospitality Management. This summer at the American Dance Festivalbeing a production intern was the best learning experience I could have ever wished for. Every week we worked about two shows while working with professional companies and their production crews. Throughout the summer I was able to connect with these people in the industry and heard stories of their experiences. In addition to working with the people in the industry, I got to work with a group of talented interns and crewmembers who are also aspiring to enter the dance world. Working as a production intern helped me understand what it is like to work in this industry and it made me want to keep working in this profession.

I was fortunate to experience most of the elements that are included when working in the theatre; deck crew, wardrobe, rail, light board operator, sound board operator, lighting design, and stage management. As we work on the shows throughout the summer, the production crew comes together and anything becomes possible; from making it rain in the theatre to laying down and taking up the marley floor within ten minutes during the show.

7:00 A.M – Get ready for the day! Pack everything I need; wrench, multi-tool, work gloves, lunch, dinner, snacks and COFFEE! Every production intern is allowed to take one class in the morning. I wanted to take class every day so I wake up a little early to pack my things for the day and head to my class.

8:00 A.M. – Dance class of the day. As much as it is a struggle to wake up in the morning, this morning class energizes me and sets my rhythm for the day!

10:00 A.M. – Head to the theatre that I am assigned to. The production crew is typically divided into two teams to work at either Reynolds Industries Theatre on Duke Campus or Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC). I had a bike this summer so I would bike over to my assigned theatre.

10:15 A.M. – Arrive at the theatre. This particular day, I’m working at Reynolds. I made sure that I arrive at the theatre as fast as I can after my morning class. As soon as I arrive, I jump into whatever work needs to be done.

10:30 A.M. – Coffee break! Grab some coffee and snacks to fuel up till lunch break.

10:45 A.M. – Back to work. Finishing up cueing lights for Heidi Latski Dance Company. Every company has their own lighting designer and I was able to learn different styles of focusing and designing lights.

12:30 P.M. – Lunch Break! I brought my own lunch but at Reynolds theatre, there are some places to grab food.

1:30 P.M. – Continue cueing. While this is happening we are standing by on the deck for anything that needs to happen, from spiking the floor or assisting dancers’ needs. For this particular show, I was on rail and I had a 20-minute rail cue. Nice and even. Slow and steady. In addition to that, this show required 6 crewmembers: a stage manager, three members on deck crew, and two members on rail crew to fly in and out projection screen, borders, and lights simultaneously during and in between the pieces.

3:45 P.M. – Break time. Go outside for a few minutes to refresh myself and grab more coffee and snacks.

4:00 P.M. – Finish up cueing and start to run the pieces. The dancers and the choreographer adjust their positions and timing for the venue while the production crew works on how we could make each pieces go even more smoothly. This is when our stage manager for Reynolds, Tiffany, helps us with her creative solutions.

6:00 P.M. – Dinner break! I brought my own dinner. During lunch and dinner breaks the crew talks about random things from telling stories and experiences we had, this is our bonding time. I personally was taking online classes throughout the summer so sometimes I had to disappear and go do my homework. These breaks are also great time to talk to the company’s stage managers and company managers and make connections!

7:00 P.M. – Dress rehearsal; the dancers warm up for a few minutes and run the show from the top. It is incredible to see all the lights, costumes, rail and everything we worked on come together.

9:00 P.M. – The dress rehearsal is finished. The company goes over their notes and fixes a few things while we clean up and set for the top of the show tomorrow.

10:00 P.M. – The company leaves the theatre and we do our last sweep. Normally we go until 11 P.M. but today we got out early. I bike my way back home, take a shower, prepare my food, and pack for tomorrow. 


finance and administration Intern Kylie McCormick

ADF was the greatest place I could have spent my summer. As a student at the University of Richmond double majoring in dance and business administration with a concentration in management, I was able to blend my two passions in one, amazing internship.

The Finance and Administration Intern has opportunities to assist other offices with financial or administrative needs, reconcile bills, sell and manage parking permits and tickets, record complimentary tickets, organize and present the Intern Showcase, work with the Merchandising Intern by receiving his/her daily reports, create “Large Print Inserts” for each performance, and (like all ADF interns) help other offices when necessary.

8:00 am Wake up and get ready for the day. I would eat breakfast, get dressed for work, and bring some dance clothes for later in the day. I only lived a quarter mile away from campus, but I drove my car to work in case I needed to run errands for any of the ADF staff.

9:00 am The Finance and Administration Office opens! I would come into the office and finish any leftover work I had from the day before. I would also make sure to organize the receipts that we had been given to reconcile the monthly credit card bills.

10:00 am The ADF Store opens! The Merchandising Intern would visit our office to pick up her moneybox and exchange larger bills for smaller change money. She would also leave me her daily report from the previous day so that I could sign off on the numbers and calculations before giving it to the Director of Finance and Administration.

10:30 am Time to start on checks! I would begin assisting the Finance Assistant with checks. We would take all of the check requests that had been coded by the Director of Finance and put them into the computer system to be accounted for and printed.

11:00 am Time to work on LPI’s! I would work on the “Large Print Insert” for the next program. These inserts had a different formatting than the original programs, so I had to take time to organize the information for someone who might have visual disabilities.

12:00 pm It’s the day before opening night of Bill T. Jones, so it is time for me to take down the complimentary ticket sign-up sheets. I would remove them from the wall outside of the Finance Office and take them to the Marketing Office.

12:30 pm Lunch time! I would bring my lunch to work so that I could eat while I was working. We had a kitchen with a microwave and fridge that were available to the students and us. 

1:00 pm I would find a good place to pause my work so that I could change into dance clothes and walk over to the gym where my dance class was held. I took a contemporary/modern class with Loren Davidson for the first 3 weeks and Angie Hauser for the second 3 weeks. This was such a nice break in the day.

3:20 pm Class ends and I head back to the office to shower, change, and get back to work.

3:35 pm I return to my desk. The Director of Finance would inform me of anything that happened while I was in class. Sometimes this required me to assist another office with something that called for more hands, such as cleaning a studio space or distributing marketing materials. I would also accounted for any parking permits that were sold while I was gone.

4:45 pm Time to plan for the Intern Showcase! I would review the Google Doc that had all of the performers’ information on it so that I could create the program. I also worked on creating an order for the performance and compiling music files in a playlist.

5:00 pm The store closes and the Merchandising Intern returns the moneybox to our office. She may ask for change money to avoid hassle in the morning or she may turn in a new daily report if it is done early.

6:00 pm I head home to change before heading to hang out with the rest of the interns at a local restaurant! I have my night off tonight, but tomorrow I will head to DPAC an hour before the Bill T. Jones performance. I would get to DPAC an hour early on ADF nights (usually the opening night of any performance) to hand out complimentary tickets with the Marketing and Communications Intern. This allowed our ADF faculty, staff, and interns to avoid the box office line when coming to pick up their tickets.

marketing and communications intern meghan roberts

As both a dance major and a communications major, this internship at ADF was everything I could have hoped for and more. It gave me an opportunity to see what working in the world of arts administration was really like and how my two majors can combine to become the career I’ve always dreamed of. I cannot be grateful enough the real life experience I gained over the course of the summer!

7:30 – Wake up ready for another exciting day at ADF! I make sure that I have a bag with my clothes packed for dance class, pack a lunch, and eat breakfast before heading out the door.

8:45 – Today several reviews came out about the Paul Taylor performance so I swing by Harris Teeter on my way into work to pick up a copy of The Herald Sun and The News And Observer.

9:00 – I arrive at the office and get straight to work! I cut out the Paul Taylor reviews from the two newspapers and scan them into the computer. I place them into Photoshop and edit out the background before its time to head to class.

10:15 – Class begins! Luckily I had a flexible schedule to be able to take class at any time of the day!

12:05 – Class ends. I head back to the office to change clothes and grab a bite to eat.

1:00 – Posters for Company Wang Ramirez need to be distributed today, so I put the posters, postcards and brochures in a tote bag and head downtown. My first stop is the Brightleaf Square district.

1:30 – Now I venture further down Main Street to distribute posters to all of the local restaurants. This area is a very popular spot in town for lunch so hopefully a lot of people will see the poster and come to the show!

2:15 – Next I head over to distribute in the American Tobacco District, another popular spot with several restaurants, lots of local businesses and a YMCA.

3:00 – Once back at the office, I continue editing the newspaper reviews of Paul Taylor to go in the press book and press board.

4:30 – I print out the articles and put one copy in the press book and give one copy to our director, Jodee Nimerichter, for her to look over.

4:45 – I compile all of the reviews from the performances of Dynamic Duos and Awkward Magic and email them to the company managers.

5:15 – Jodee returns the Paul Taylor reviews to me so I put them up on our press board in the hall for everyone to read!

6:00 – Its time to head out for the day! A few of the other interns and I go grab dinner and relax for a while before we go home and get ready to return for another great day tomorrow!