Although Jenna Broccolo ’12 loved to act in plays when she was in high school, she didn’t actually know what a stage manager was until she enrolled at the University of Rhode Island. And what a discovery it’s been for her.
During her four years at URI, this energetic theatre major played a behind-the-scenes role in a dozen shows. She operated spotlights, worked the soundboard, served as assistant stage manager for a festival of one-act plays and for the 2010 production of A Flea in Her Ear, and ran the show as stage manager for The Rocky Horror Picture Show in 2011 and Singin’ in the Rain in 2012.
“My dream job is as a stage manager on Broadway.”
At the same time, Jenna worked at Theatre by the Sea in nearby Matunuck, where she gained both experience and important contacts. “I met a lot of professional actors and stage managers who let me know that I could do what they do and encouraged me to keep going,” she says, and that is exactly what she’s doing. After graduation Jenna headed to Disney World for a five-month internship in the costume department where she’s not only helping Disney characters with their costumes, but also learning the logistics involved in managing a costume operation.
Eventually Jenna hopes to find her way to a metropolitan area—preferably New York City or Chicago—to work in professional theater. “My dream job is as a stage manager on Broadway,” she says. With her experience, passion, and enthusiasm, Jenna is well on her way to making that dream come true.