The auditions are over! You've settled on your cast and are all ready to keep moving forward with your magnificent production!!! It's time now to get going in the rehearsal phase. There are two main elements that happen concurrently in the first phase of rehearsal These first two phases happen simultaneously after which the next phase occurs. Typically before Tech Week there will be what is known as a Designer's Run through. A rehearsal where the actors run through the entire show in order to show the Designers the whole play. This is a chance for the Designers to see the play on its feet and get a chance to have an idea of how it will look before moving into Tech Week.
The Actors Rehearsal
This is where most of the rehearsal occurs. The actors will be working with the director and will be memorizing lines, learning blocking, developing characters, etc. Much of the rehearsal time will be devoted to this portion of it. Most people when they think of rehearsal are thinking of this kind of rehearsal. These rehearsals are typically scheduled and planned out in advance. The actors meet with the director for a set amount of time and work on advancing the story and telling it in the best way possible. The times are structured so as to get the most out the actors and use their time effectively.
It is important to remember that while the actors are busy working on their aspect of rehearsal there is another one taking place. It may not be directly referred to as a rehearsal and in the literal sense it is not, however the technical elements that occur behind the scenes are just as important to the overall success of the show. Unlike actors rehearsal these "rehearsals" are not scheduled for specific times. Most of the time Designers will work independently on their own schedule to ensure that all the technical elements are coming together. Designers will be spending their time away from the actor's rehearsal and working on their tech elements, they rarely come to rehearsals. This is why rehearsal reports are so important. If there is a tech/costume/make-up element that is discussed in the actor's rehearsal, it needs to be brought to the attention of the right Designer so they are aware of it.
Tech week typically begins on Tech Day and lasts the entire week up until opening (hence why it is called tech week), although the actual period may be longer or shorter than a week. This is the point in rehearsal where the acting and tech elements begin to come together in preparation for the opening of a show. This is one of the longest and most stressful periods of the production. It is the final phase of rehearsal before opening.
Opening / Running / Closing
This is the period after rehearsal where the show is running. There is usually no rehearsal after the show Opens, and all that happens is the show runs. Things begin to settle into a pattern during this phase and the show will usually run until it closes.