Shared Leadership in a Community Theater Group: Filling the Leadership Role
In contrast to research in which an individual leader is assigned or expected to emerge, musical theater productions provide an opportunity to explore how leadership is shared among the director, assistant director, music director, choreographer, and stage manager in a naturally occurring group. This ethnographic study explores how one community theater group managed the sharing of leadership roles when the primary director assumed a passive or ineffective role. The study explores the communication and affective responses of the secondary leaders and cast members when they perceived that the primary leadership failed to function and then examines how secondary leaders and cast members communicated to share the leadership to produce successful theatrical performances. The results have implications for other groups with shared leadership structures.