I’ve been away for a long time ago. I remember from time to time that I should write something, but with the three previous contracts on a ship already, I could not seem to find enough time. That is partially because I wanted to describe everything as detailed as possible, as I was doing in my previous posts.
Overall, work experience as a Stage Staff can be divided in a following way:
WHAT IS STAGE STAFF??
First and foremost – SALARY: Stage Staff gets $1.450 twice a month; two times $725 plus receives a + $92 per month (2x $46 every two weeks) Vacation Pay, which accumulates and is paid at the end of the contract before leaving the ship.
The number of Stage Staff team members depends on how big is the ship.
At Brilliance Of The Seas we were 4 (1 head Stage and 3 Stage Staff) – Radiance, smaller class ships, is the first class where Stage Staff is treated as “Technical Stage Staff” and gets $1150 + $300.
Explorer and Independence have 7 stage staff members (Voyager and Freedom class). Although Independence is bigger, it has the same ship construction plan, but added to the central part of the ship length of about 20m.
Stage staff is a technical positions of workers / technicians in the theater involved in setting the stage in the theater as well as other parts of the ship and is a part of the Cruise Division.
Cruise Division is a team of 100 + people (depending on the size of the ship), led by the Cruise Director (CD).
Cruise Director’s right hand is Activities Manager.
Supervisor of the Stage Staff is a Production Manager (PM) and direct (immediate) supervisor is a Head Stage Staff (temporary position, usually granted to experienced staffers)
– Upon arrival at the ship – What happens the first few days / week
At the entrance to the ship, the popular “Gangway”, you are greeted by PM, Head Stage Staff or someone who is determined by him from the Cruise Division.
You get a guided boat tour, shown where the canteen & training room for the upcoming training is, your cabin, HR office where you get your ID card, room key, emergency card (card with instructions and your personal number by which they identify your place and role in the event of an accident / emergency / drill) etc. …
– Daily duties:
Head stage staff each day makes a schedule for upcoming day according to the Cruise Compass (flyer / schedule of activities for guests during the day), received e-mails and PM’s instructions.
On average you have a 4-6 hours work day, except that the work is not done continuously, but in several intervals during the day. It can happen that your break for 3-4 hours in the afternoon has to be interrupted just to get some task completed for 5-15 minutes.
So there is no fixed working hours, when there is work to be done, it’s yours to do it.
It happened to me that sometimes I worked more than 12 to 14 hours a day, although very rarely. On the other hand, more often happened that I worked less than 2 and even a 1 hour a day. Everything depends on the Cruise Director and his organizational abilities, but also the ability of Head Stage Staff to come up with a good schedule.
On some ships, all the technicians and stage staff have deck phones (Brilliance in my case), and at some ships only staff staff on duty carries Deck phone (Explorer and Independence).
Length of “on call” duty also vary from 4 days on Brilliance to 7 days on EX and ID, and during this period the person on duty can not get out of the ship in ports because of the “on call” unless you find someone to replace you.
In the next episode you’ll see:
– Cast Install
– Studio B
– Aqua Theater
– Themed party for guests