What does a Theatre Fight Director do?

A Fight Director is responsible for planning, choreographing and overseeing staged combat (fights) in a film, play or other performance. They act as a consultant for the performance. Fight Directors can also be referred to as Fighting Directors, or Fight Choreographers and they are experts at making a fight look realistic while ensuring it is safe for the Actors and other participants. 

Search through our training, experience and funding opportunities here.

What are the main responsibilities of a Theatre Fight Director?

  • Choreograph combat sequences (fight sequences) which can range from martial arts to swordplay to mock gunfights while keeping the Director’s vision in mind
  • Ensure the safety of the Actors performing the stage combat and other participants
  • Ensure the sequence looks realistic and works well within the play
  • Using the correct techniques that are appropriate to the historical period in which the scene/play takes place
  • Fight Directors can teach other Directors and Actors the craft of staged combat in a non-production environment

What qualifications do I need to be a Theatre Fight Director?

To be a Fight Director you will need a formal qualification in stage combat.

See our opportunities in stage combat here.

What skills do I need to be a Theatre Fight Director?

  • Physical agility
  • Attention to detail
  • Research skills
  • Historical knowledge
  • People skills
  • Dance skills
  • Creative flare

What does a career in fight directing look like?

You can be a Fight Director whilst doing other job roles at the same time. For example, a theatre Choreographer can often move into a Fight Director role as both roles require similar skills. Fight Directors are often freelance and take on different kinds of jobs in lots of different settings. 

Read our blog ‘How to become a freelancer in theatre’ here.

You can also search for Fight Director roles using The Stage Jobs here.



Photo: Shutterstock

Published: 23 October 2019

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