Rigging is the use of hardware to lift, lower, and hold performance equipment on or above the stage. A variety of rigging hardware may be used for various tasks, and understanding the load capacity for each piece of equipment is critical.

Staff and students must receive training prior to operating any rigging equipment.

There are several methods of rigging that may be used, depending on the circumstance (i.e.-counterweights, motorized or rope systems) in positioning props and/or people.

General Safe Use Guidelines:

  • Inspect rigging equipment before use, after any alterations, and at regular intervals.
    • The department must have an annual inspection plan as well.
  • Anything attached to a flybar must have a safety cable attached as well.
  • Check that everything attached to a light, including barn doors, gel cases and safety cables, is secure before it is raised.
  • Make sure the rope or cord is strong enough for what you are lifting and that the rope or cord is not frayed or damaged in any way.
    • Report and remove any damaged or defective slings or ropes from service.
  • Never exceed the safe load capacity of the system.
  • Warn people on the stage or grid before moving any rigged scenery or other objects.
  • Maintain control and visual contact with a moving piece at all times.
  • If you are using a purchased rigging product, follow manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Never access the catwalks until trained and authorized to do so.
  • Secure rigging equipment when it is not in use.


  • For Overall Program Management, to obtain an Art Safety Manual, or for guidelines on how to store and/or dispose of hazardous waste contact Peter Skeels