Martin Hodgson's reply:
Production Management is all about experience as you have realised. It is very rare for someone to get into the industry directly in that role. The usual way is through Stage Management. ie a job as an ASM then DSM, SM etc. Over time with some experience of productions, and some budget handling skills, then you would be in a position to make the step to PM. Obviously the smaller the production the more ' jack of all trades' each of these roles are, therefore more experience you get. Some bigger productions offer Production Assistant roles and these are ideal for getting into the role you are after. I know someone who got such a role on 'Barnum' for instance. It is always worth contacting a production manager and seeing if they need an assistant, even if it is only for the week they are in your town, offer to shadow or volunteer and you never know! College courses that give practical experience of the role are also valid experience, but it must be practical. Production Management is not something to be just talked about...! Hope that's of some help.