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Job ID: 230635

Technical Director (6146U) - 61578
University of California, Berkeley

Date Posted Feb. 13, 2024
Title Technical Director (6146U) - 61578
University University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA, United States
Application Deadline Open until filled
Position Start Date Available immediately
  • Professional Staff
  • Arts/Museum/Theater

Technical Director (6146U) - 61578

About Berkeley

At the University of California, Berkeley, we are committed to creating a community that fosters equity of experience and opportunity, and ensures that students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds feel safe, welcome and included. Our culture of openness, freedom and belonging make it a special place for students, faculty and staff.

The University of California, Berkeley, is one of the world's leading institutions of higher education, distinguished by its combination of internationally recognized academic and research excellence; the transformative opportunity it provides to a large and diverse student body; its public mission and commitment to equity and social justice; and its roots in the California experience, animated by such values as innovation, questioning the status quo, and respect for the environment and nature. Since its founding in 1868, Berkeley has fueled a perpetual renaissance, generating unparalleled intellectual, economic and social value in California, the United States and the world.

We are looking for equity-minded applicants who represent the full diversity of California and who demonstrate a sensitivity to and understanding of the diverse academic, socioeconomic, cultural, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ethnic backgrounds present in our community. When you join the team at Berkeley, you can expect to be part of an inclusive, innovative and equity-focused community that approaches higher education as a matter of social justice that requires broad collaboration among faculty, staff, students and community partners. In deciding whether to apply for a position at Berkeley, you are strongly encouraged to consider whether your values align with our Guiding Values and Principles, our Principles of Community, and our Strategic Plan.

At UC Berkeley, we believe that learning is a fundamental part of working, and our goal is for everyone on the Berkeley campus to feel supported and equipped to realize their full potential. We actively support this by providing all of our staff employees with at least 80 hours (10 days) of paid time per year to engage in professional development activities. To find out more about how you can grow your career at UC Berkeley, visit

Departmental Overview

The Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies (TDPS) teaches performance as a mode of critical inquiry, creative expression, and public engagement. Through performance training and research, we create liberal arts graduates with expanded analytical, technical, and imaginative capacities. As a public institution, we make diversity and inclusion a key part of our teaching, art making, and public programming.

Located within the College of Letters and Science, the faculty, staff, and students in TDPS - and in the allied Graduate Group in Performance Studies - pursue a wide spectrum of research and production activities. We see performance as an interdisciplinary form, exploring verbal, visual, spatial, and embodied registers of experience. We see performance as a transnational cultural form, exploring the politics and poetics of social life in all parts of the world. We see performance as a public forum for contemporary ideas, allowing us to test and debate the central concerns of our time in a space that is at once critical, emotional, and collective.

Our faculty and staff are nationally and internationally known, both for their scholarly research and their artistic work in design, directing, choreography, acting, and experimental performance. Our curriculum ranges from the classics to the contemporary; it cuts across theatrical, dance, and visual art forms; it spans all corners of the globe, using the site of performance to deepen UC Berkeley's critical education in the humanities.

Position Summary

The Technical Director (TD) has primary responsibility of overseeing the research, development, budgeting, engineering, drafting, technical construction, installation, maintenance and strike of all scenery (built, purchased, rented, or otherwise) for all productions produced and presented by TDPS. The TD also supervises two full-time staff members, Scene Shop Supervisor and Scenic Artist/Carpenter and 4-6 work study students. Additionally, the Technical Director is responsible for training and supervising students completing Scenery Labs for THEATER 168 (Shop Lab Practice) and THEATER 169 (Advanced Shop Lab Practice).

The TD oversees annual scenery budgets for department productions, shop upgrades, maintenance, equipment and tool purchases and manages expense tracking and reconciliation. In addition, the TD takes an active role in communicating with faculty scenic designers and student scenic designers with an emphasis on honoring artistic integrity, while managing budget targets and ensuring appropriate design scale or scope, in order to maintain a balanced, safe and healthy work environment for scene shop staff and student workers.

Technical Director also has primary responsibility for the scene shop and related shops (paint shop, trap room, scenery storage, furniture storage, properties storage, etc.). In coordination with the Production Manager and Theater Supervisor/ Head Electrician, the Technical Director has shared responsibility for the four theater venues, for maintenance of facility and stage equipment, soft goods and rigging, and establishing procedures for operations for all users within the facilities. Assists in different tech areas as needed and as time permits. In addition to production related duties, the Technical Director consults (on a more minimal scale) on the technical needs for workshop or student group related productions.

Application Review Date

The First Review Date for this job is: 11/27/2023.


  • Administers annual scenery budgets, ensuring that expenditures are within agreed upon budgetary limits and manages expense reconciliation.
  • Responsible for providing accurate estimates and feedback on proposed designs, and working with faculty designers and student designers to reach final design choices that can be attained within budget.
  • Determines construction techniques and details of construction and installation.
  • Researches materials and hardware required to execute the construction of designed units and informs Scene Shop Supervisor of ordering needs.
  • Coordinates borrowing/rental of theatrical production elements.
  • Prepares detailed construction drawings of designer drawings, rigging and technical drawings, and any other such drawings pertinent to the scenery, stages, or other performance locations, in AutoCAD, Vectorworks and PDF formats for use by scene shop staff, shop work study students, stage management and other production department staff.
  • In conjunction with the Scene Shop Supervisor and Scenic Artist, trains and leads students in Theater 168 AND Theater 169, laboratory settings associated with theatrical productions, and evaluates students in laboratory work.
  • Trains and leads a team of 4-6 work study students with varying levels of experience.
  • Analyzes and proposes staffing requirements, identifies/resolves work flow problems, recruits, trains, assigns work and schedules; recommends merit increases, salary adjustments, and classification reviews.
  • Attends technical and dress rehearsals and consults with designers regarding notes, changes, and/or additions.
  • Establishes procedures and leads users (staff and students) in safe, proper practices of theatrical construction and installation and in safe use, proper handling, and maintenance of all machinery, power and hand tools, and other shop and theater equipment.
  • Ensures professional and safe general shop conditions and operations, including fulfilling reporting and record-keeping requirements and all applicable rules/regulations including federal, state, OSHA and Cal/OSHA guidelines and regulations.
  • Works with Fire Marshall and Environmental Health & Safety to ensure the use, and documentation, of safe practices in all shops and performances spaces.
  • In conjunction with the Production Manager, creates shop timelines, inclusive of design deadlines plus associated deliverables, budgeting deadlines and build, install and strike timelines per project.
  • In collaboration with the Scene Shop Supervisor, maintains shop facilities and equipment and coordinates with senior managers regarding theater facilities and property management.
  • Recommends expenditures for equipment; advises on planning of major alterations of existing facilities or development of new facilities.
  • Supervises two full-time staff members, Scene Shop Supervisor and Scenic Artist/Carpenter and 4-6 work study students.
  • Additionally, the Technical Director is responsible for training and supervising students completing Scenery Labs for THEATER 168 (Shop Lab Practice) and THEATER 169 (Advanced Shop Lab Practice).
  • Attends all department, staff and production meetings; serves on department committees.
  • Advises on all problems associated with multiple aspects of production operations.

Required Qualifications

  • Expertise knowledge of tool use and maintenance specific to the scene shop, and theater facilities.
  • Knowledge of standards of practice in the field, and standards of safety and safe operation in theater and related fields (concert, dance, opera, film, etc.).
  • Good working knowledge/ basic skill in financial administration.
  • Team Management: 1-3 years experience supervising and leading a team of staff members and students with varying levels of experience.
  • Scenic Construction: Standard techniques and practices of scenic construction including: carpentry and scenic carpentry; hand and power tool use, and stationary power tool operation; jig construction; sewing and construction of soft goods and scenic drops; furniture building; painting and finishing techniques; welding and metal working of steel and aluminum; fabrication in other media (e.g. plastics, concrete, copper-mesh); electrical wiring; safe lifting; drafting; specialty skills (e.g. foam carving, sculpting, model building).
  • Rigging: Operation of theatrical rigging equipment including: counter-weight purchase systems (single or double); hemp systems (block and tackle, block and fall, sand bag picks); chain motors and electric winches; trouble-shooting, maintenance, and repair or adjustment of rigging systems; maintenance of purchase system, line-sets and peripheral equipment; proper identification and assemblage of rigging components and knots; hanging and flying of scenery and/or lighting equipment.
  • Working knowledge of advanced rigging theory and physical law.
  • Knows and applies principles of mathematics, especially geometry
  • Scenic Painting: Awareness of standard scenic painting techniques.
  • Production Coordination: Must be familiar with all aspects of production.
  • Coordinate across all technical areas to ensure timely realization of event.
  • Advanced knowledge of production methods and techniques.
  • Ability to prioritize competing needs over time between short (production based) and long term (organizational) goals.
  • Computer Skills: VectorWorks, Google Suite, Excel, Microsoft Word.
  • Bachelor's degree in related area and/or equivalent experience/training.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Lighting: (some knowledge): Hanging and circuiting of a light plot.
  • Basic operation of most lighting components (followspots, ellipsoidal spotlights, PARs, Fresnels, dimmers, control systems).
  • Troubleshooting of lighting systems and plots. Basic operation of standard theatrical lighting control consoles.
  • Sound: (some knowledge): Correct and appropriate installation of a sound system.
  • Operation of most sound system components, esp. communication systems, and industry-standard control consoles).
  • Troubleshooting of sound systems and plots.
  • Computer Skills: AutoCAD, Filemaker Pro, BFS, UCB EH&S Chemical Inventory Database, PPCS Facilities management database
  • Working knowledge of and/or can quickly learn University and collective bargaining policies, practices, rules, regulations, etc., including safety rules and regulations.
  • OSHA 10.
  • OSHA 30.
  • Entertainment Rigging.

Salary & Benefits

This is a 100% full-time (40 hrs a week) exempt career position, which is paid monthly and eligible for UC Benefits.

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University, please visit the University of California's Compensation & Benefits website.

Under California law, the University of California, Berkeley is required to provide a reasonable estimate of the compensation range for this role and should not offer a salary outside of the range posted in this job announcement. This range takes into account the wide range of factors that are considered in making compensation decisions including but not limited to experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, analysis of internal equity, and other business and organizational needs. It is not typical for an individual to be offered a salary at or near the top of the range for a position. Salary offers are determined based on final candidate qualifications and experience.

The budgeted salary or hourly range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position is $79,000.00 - $105,000.00.

How to Apply

  • To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter.

Driving Required

  • A valid driver's license and DMV check for driving record is required.

Other Information

  • This is not a visa opportunity.

Conviction History Background

This is a designated position requiring fingerprinting and a background check due to the nature of the job responsibilities. Berkeley does hire people with conviction histories and reviews information received in the context of the job responsibilities. The University reserves the right to make employment contingent upon successful completion of the background check.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information about your rights as an applicant, please see the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission poster.

For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, please see the University of California Discrimination, Harassment, and Affirmative Action in the Workplace policy.

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