Careers in Culture – Careers in Live Performing Arts

> Many career choices for you

Theatre: Careers That Turn Worlds Into Magic

Contemporary works, new comedies, classical tragedies, musicals – theatre is where the talents of the playwright, actors and backstage staff combine with the imagination of the audience to create a magical space where anything can happen. The theatre scene in Canada is lively and vigorous. Small companies offer new perspectives and diverse cultural expressions to local audiences. Touring companies put on plays in schools, bring successful shows to community stages and develop international touring programs. Large theatre companies with their own facilities put on a full season of performances.

If the stage touches your spirit in a special way, consider getting a college/Cégep diploma, university degree or conservatory training in acting, drama, theatre arts, lighting or sound design, multi-media or theatre administration. This knowledge could be a vital step to a rich and rewarding career path.

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Dance a Story, Dance a Tradition

From classical to experimental, dance is a vibrant and major part of Canada's culture. It expresses our thoughts and feelings and is like a mirror, reflecting us back to ourselves. Today, many people are involved in many types of dance, and in many different kinds of spaces. A large company with a classical ballet repertoire may perform in a large theatre. A small contemporary dance ensemble may give performances in its own studio. A touring ensemble – in any number of dance forms – may put on a show in a community centre. Your love of dance is key to a career in this important art form.

Perhaps you're already in dance, training for classical ballet or in the traditional dances from a particular culture or region. Or you’re starting to choreograph in an experimental dance form. Maybe you want to work behind the scenes as a technician or rehearsal director. Whatever your choice, get the best training and education you can and then explore the many aspects of Canada's dance world to find out what suits your skills best.

Opera: Old Worlds and New Sounds

Opera is changing and audiences are growing. First, the tagging of classical operas is being modernized by including more theatrical performances and new art forms such as multimedia and film. Second, Canada is on the cutting edge of new opera development. Creators are incorporating music and voice techniques from places such as Africa, Asia and South America and using modern technologies to create new art forms such as electro-acoustical operas that don't require musical instruments, or blending various digital media techniques into performances.

If you love the possibilities of the human voice, many opera careers might suit you – from singer to stage manager, from musical director to voice coach, from fundraiser to ticket seller. Check out schools that specialize in opera and operatic performance. Or consider getting training in music, theatre or administration.

Circus Artists Dazzle the Globe

Did you know that Canada is a world leader in circus arts? That our companies are known worldwide for their innovative approach to circus production? The new circus is theatrical and dramatic, with circus artists who include acting, dance, mime and music in their performances. Want to join the circus? Today's companies are looking for circus act creators, talented performers, and backstage workers such as managers, technicians and riggers.

If you're interested in performance, start developing your theatrical and physical skills now and    consider getting professional training in circus arts. If you like the idea of working behind the scenes, think about a college or university program in theatrical production and management.

Musicals and Revues Are Finding New Venues

With the recent upswing in musicals, cabarets and revues, performers are finding other stages in corporate settings such as large auto and trade shows. Dancers and performers are finding work in music videos, business videos, and entertainment shows for special events. Look beyond the traditional venues for performance opportunities.