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Black Box Theatre

Black Box Theatre Policies


Download Policies and Procedures for Blackbox Theatre here

  • All NYU Rules and Regulations must be followed at all times.
  • No food or drink is allowed in the Theatre, On-Stage, or in the Lighting Booth unless it is a prop for a production.
  • No alcohol or smoking is allowed in any NYU building at any time for any reason.


Fire safety is critical; we follow the law scrupulously in this regard. The following guidelines must be observed:

  • No flame is permitted in the Theatre. This includes, but is not limited to, open flames, flash pots, cigarettes, cigars, pipes, smoke cones, oil lamps, gas lamps, torches, and candles. No exceptions will be accepted.
  • Fire Exits must not be obstructed: keep all aisles clear, all doors completely accessible, and all backstage paths clean and unimpeded,
  • Illuminated “Exit” signs may not be blocked, turned off, lamped down, or gelled.
  • Pull Stations and Fire Extinguishers must be visible and easily accessible at all times.
  • Every supervisor should know the location and operation of all Fire Extinguishers, and be prepared to indicate the Emergency Exits to the audience should a swift evacuation of the Theatre become necessary.
  • Nothing may be stored in the hallway south of the Theatre, nor in front of the doors which lead to the Washington Square Windows display.
  • All wires and cables on the floor must be completely taped down. No wire should cross an exit, but should be routed up and over the doorway.
  • Combustible items must be stored in the combustibles cabinet in the Scene Shop in the basement of the Education Building.


  • Keep the Theatre in a safe, usable, and clean condition at all times.
  • The grand piano must be easily accessible at all times for classes. The piano is not to be used as a work or storage surface, and must be locked after every use.
  • Permission to use the Blackbox Theatre does not imply permission to use other NYU spaces or properties. Separate permission must be obtained for the use of costumes, props, the Scene Shop, or other rehearsal spaces.
  • The Blackbox Theatre has 74 seats and due to fire regulations, no more than 74 audience members are allowed in the space. This includes ushers and house managers. No one may stand or sit on the bleacher stairs or in the aisles, or in front of Fire Exits.
  • All Fire Doors must remain closed at all times.
  • Publicity and other signs may not be hung on the walls or doors of the Theatre, the Lobby, or the Foyer; they should be displayed on the easels and bulletin boards in the Lobby.
  • The Dressing Room is multi-use room: access to the piano, paint sink, and closet must be maintained; policing for trash and sweeping/vacuuming must be done daily; and at the end of each performance, all costumes, makeup, props, and personal items should be removed and properly stored.


  • House soft goods may not be moved or removed without the permission of the Technical Director.
  • The Grid is rated at 30 lbs/ft and this safe working load limit may not be exceeded.
  • All items in excess of 10 lbs that are to be hung from the Grid must be installed with aircraft cable and/or other rated and approved hardware. Hanging methods and equipment are subject to the approval of the MPAP Technical Director. No live loads (e.g. pulleys, swings, catwalks) may be hung from the grid.
  • The Grid is not designed to support human weight—please do not climb, hang, or swing from it.
  • Lighting booms must be anchored to both the grid and the floor.
  • Ladders and music stands are stored under the risers against the south wall of the theatre.
  • All props for productions and classes must be properly stored in the appropriate cabinets.


  • Any organization using the Blackbox Theatre must provide their own personnel to run an event. This may include a stage manager, and other backstage personnel.
  • Following the final performance, and within the allotted time, all equipment must be removed from the Theatre. This includes set pieces, musical instruments, and personal items.
  • There must be a house manager for all performances. This person is responsible for double-checking for the presence of Protection, coordinating ushers, preparing the Theatre for the audience, cleaning the auditorium after each performance, and coordinating box office staff. The House Manager and Ushers are provided by the department.
  • At least two weeks before the first use of the theatre, the MPAP Technical Director must be provided with a list of all people who will be working on the production. This is essential for clear communication with Protection Services.
  • One hour before the event, ushers should arrive and prepare for audience arrival by clearing the house of trash, stray personal items, etc., and preparing the programs. Ushers should notify the MPAP Technical Director when they find broken seats.


  • While classes are asked not to disturb production properties, there is no guarantee of safety. It is suggested that all sensitive or expensive equipment and property be locked up after every rehearsal and performance.
  • Requests for equipment—including, but not limited to, chairs, music stands, music stand lights, and sound equipment—must be submitted via an Equipment Request Form to the MPAP Office on the 7th floor of the Education Building a minimum of two weeks before an event.
  • All deliveries and returns of scenery, lighting, costumes, sound, and props must occur between 9am and 6pm Monday through Friday.
  • All performances are required to have a program, which must include certain information regarding the Frederick Loewe Theatre, NYU, and the Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions on its back page. Please contact John Bertrand to discuss this requirement.
  • Only cloth spike tape, cloth gaffers tape, and glow tape may be used in the Theatre. Cellophane, masking, duct, and electrical tapes are not allowed. At the end of the production, all tape must be removed. Nothing may be taped to the walls of the theatre or backstage.
  • Scenery for a production must accommodate classes and other activities in the Blackbox Theatre. The Technical Director must approve all scenery to ensure it provides enough space for other activities and access to the pianos and rehearsal props for classes.
  • After every rehearsal and performance, all scenery and props must be stored so that 70% of the floor space between the four columns is available for classes.


  • Warnings must be posted in the entryway and program if any strobe, fog, haze, smoke, firearms, or air horns are to be used in a show.
  • Work in the Theatre must stop at least one-half hour before the end of the work call, with the remaining time dedicated to clean-up. Tools must be stored properly, all paint items cleaned and put away, the Theatre cleared of construction materials, and all areas swept and/or vacuumed.
  • Access to the cabinets will be given to the Stage Manager to secure valuables. Any items left behind after strike become property of the Department.
  • Strike is the final clean-up; all scenery needs to be removed and stored or thrown away; lighting restored to its original configuration; all rental items returned; all costumes cleaned and stored; and the Theatre returned to its barest, emptiest condition. At strike, the following apply:
  1. The space must be left in a condition that is suitable for the next class or event.
  2. The stage must be empty of all scenery, painted black, and free of screws, nails, and other hardware.
  3. The Booth and Dressing room should be cleaned out and restored to original operating condition.
  4. All boom-mounted units, floor-mounted units, follow-spots, boom pipe, grid extension pipe, and extraneous cable must be struck and returned to proper storage. Burnouts must be replaced and expendables—including zip cord, gel, tieline, and templates—should be saved and stored.
  5. Headsets and beltpacks should be returned to the appropriate storage in the Booth.
  • All items left behind—including set pieces, props, costumes, and equipment—will be discarded, given away, or become the property of the Department.