Opera Philadelphia

Virtual Backstage Pass

This vocational training program helps students set the stage for an exciting career behind the curtain in theater, concert, opera, television, film, corporate events, and more. Technical theater careers, many of which do not require a college education, are rewarding, take place in a variety of exciting job locations, and offer high-paying wages. Participants of the Backstage Pass program discover the ins and outs of each job, networking on their journey of learning to launch their careers and find future employment. 

Over the course of this virtual program, students will meet industry professionals, virtually visit theaters and workshops, and build their skills through hands-on training sessions taught by industry professionals. Applicants will undergo an application and interview process to assess if Backstage Pass is the right fit for them. Given satisfactory attendance and engagement, the chosen 6 participants will receive a $250 stipend at the completion of this program.

For more information, call 215.893.5946 or email outreach@operaphila.org.


Sessions will be conducted the following Mondays from 4:00-6:00 p.m.



January 4th

History of Stage Lighting

January 18th

Color Theory

February 1st

Basics of Carpentry Safety

February 15th

Basic Stagehand & Safety

March 1st

Brief Histories of Wigs and Makeup

March 15th

Special FX Makeup

April 5th

Make a Light at Home

April 19th

Intro to Stage Management

May 3rd

Intro to Sound

May 17th

Carpentry TBD


Virtual Backstage Pass Instructors:

  • Dan Amadie, Backstage Pass Consultant and Stagehand Instructor
  • Ali Blair Barwick, Electrics Instructor
  • Paul Hewitt, Carpentry Instructor
  • Alfreda “Fre” Howard, Makeup & Wig Instructor 
  • Dan Imburgia, Sound Instructor
  • Norah Scheinman, Stage Management Instructor
Backstage Pass
Costume Director Millie Hiibel greets students from the CHAD high school in the Opera Costume Shop Credit: Michael Bolton
Chat with Guest Services