During my two seasons at Park Square Theatre, I kept hearing her name: “We’d better check with Megan.” “Go ask Megan.” “Megan would know.” And no wonder–as Production Manager of the theatre, she juggles a million tasks. If you look at the long list of her duties, you’ll wonder: What does she NOT do?
Park Square Theatre describes that its production manager “reports to the Artistic Director and liaisons with each production’s artistic team and current staff members to produce quality theatrical productions and provide supportive management to all its productions temporary employees” and that her key roles to be performed “are budget monitoring, contracting, artist payroll, production prep, auditioning and communication between departments.” This means that, to be able to effectively fulfill all duties and responsibilities, West must have familiarity with what everyone else in the production team does and how they interconnect, possess strong management and financial skills, and basically serve as the central information unit for all departments involved in the production. How do you prepare for such a massive job?
West first came to Park Square Theatre about ten years ago, straight out of Minnesota State University Moorhead, where she’d earned a B.A. in Theatre Arts with emphases in acting, directing, and theatre technology and design. She quickly became an Assistant Stage Manager when the Assistant Technical Director asked West one day if she had any Friday plans. She did not, they needed an assistant stage manager for the play Door to Door, and she was on her way. West worked backstage for many different productions including Steel Magnolias, Constant Star and The Diary of Anne Frank before being hired as the Production Assistant. That title grew into Production Manager along with the theatre.
In October, West goes on maternity leave while a temporary production manager steps in. For a while, she can set down her many responsibilities at Park Square to go tackle another joyful challenge.