Conference Tips

What do I do at the conference?

Interviews and auditions for Thespian Scholarship Candidates, including performance, technical, and theatre educator, will be held on Thursday of Conference, 6:00 pm – 10: 00 pm, and Friday of Conference, 9:30 am – 2:30 pm at the Marriott.

Junior College performance auditions will be held on Thursday of Conference, from 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm at the Trade Center. Senior College performance auditions will be held on Friday of Conference, from 9:30 am – 3:00 pm at the Trade Center.

College/University auditions for Design Tech/ Management students (Junior & Senior) and Theatre Educators will be held on Friday on Conference, 5:00pm-7:30pm, in the Trade Center. Students will be able to set up presentations from 5:00pm to 6:00 pm. Auditions may conflict with some shows. Students and sponsors will need to work those conflicts out. This audition cannot be rescheduled. Students will also be able to set up portfolios/displays early on Thursday between 5-6pm to keep in ballroom until Friday night. 

Theatre Educator Scholarship candidates must bring a drama lesson plan for one week of classes and be present during the tech audition session. They may also bring a portfolio and/or a display board that shows their experience and involvement in theatre education. They may also participate in the regular performance auditions.

Callbacks for Thespian Scholarships will be held Friday, approximately 3:30 pm at the Marriott. Callbacks for colleges/universities will be indicated on Guidebook.

Be on time. A list of call times for auditions (and interview times for some) will be posted on the website late January. You should arrive at registration tables to check in thirty minutes before your posted audition time.

You will remain in the hall until the time to enter the audition room. You will enter and leave the room in groups. You will be required to remain with the group until dismissed from the audition room. There will be adult volunteers to line you up, give you a number, give you last-minute instructions, and direct you in and out of the room.

College representatives will submit callbacks and they will be posted to the Guidebook app. Callback information will include instructions on when and where to meet the college representative. Take advantage of this opportunity to talk with these representatives.

Additional callbacks for the Georgia Thespian Scholarships will take place immediately after those students have completed auditions. Look for this callback sheet to be posted and arrive on time if called back. These will be posted on Guidebook.

Be flexible. We are working to provide you with a valuable opportunity. Changes may have to be made. Unforeseen situations may arise. Your cooperation and understanding will help everyone involved. Everyone working with auditions will want you to do the best you can and will help you in any way possible.

Be yourself. The college representatives want to see who you are and what you are like. They need to know that they would like to work with you and that you would be willing to work with their programs.

Dress so that the college reps get some idea of your body. They need to know your body type. Dress so that you can perform without restrictions. Wear shoes that allow natural movement. No chunky shoes or extremes in dress.

Break Legs!

Performance Audition Tips

How do I prepare for my Acting/Singing Audition?

Prepare a ninety second audition that best demonstrates your talents, range, and abilities. Your introduction will not count toward your time unless it is excessive. Prepare your introduction so that it will take no longer than a few seconds. Include your name, your school, the characters you will play and the plays from which they come. Do not explain the selections.

You will be given ninety (90) seconds to use as you wish. A timekeeper will ask you to stop if you go over this time limit. If you are asked to stop, the proper response to the timekeeper is “Thank you.” Your time begins with your first selection. Your introduction will not count against your time, but should last no more than a few seconds.

Select audition pieces that demonstrate your abilities, flexibility, range, and talents. You may want to select two short monologues of contrasting styles, periods, or content. If you wish to sing, you may want to select a song that presents a different kind of character from the character in your monologue. Work with your director to develop and polish whatever you present. Remember that this is your time to do whatever it is you do best.

You will be provided with one straight back chair. Costumes are not permitted. Props are not permitted.

Select dramatic literature that is more action than “telling.” The college representatives want to see and hear theatre pieces, not your dramatic/humorous interpretation selection, your original work, or pieces from film or television. They want to see you perform.

Do not explain the selections. A proper introduction includes your name, where you are from, the character(s) you will be performing, and the titles of the play(s) (remember our time restraints). If you are performing two selections, introduce both at the beginning of the presentation. The introduction will not be included in your time.

Read the whole play, not just the selection. You may be caught off guard if a representative asks you about the play. Reading the whole play should be basic to any monologue preparation you undertake.

The college reps continue to indicate that they are not interested in hearing selections with accents.

Profanity in selections gives the representatives a negative impression of you and makes everyone uncomfortable.

Select pieces that are appropriate to your age.

Have backup pieces prepared. You should have other monologues and songs you can present with confidence if asked to do so by the reps.

Ask your director for help in selecting/cutting a monologue/song.

A well-prepared student is more impressive that one who tries to cram as much “acting” as possible into 90 seconds.

Leave time to acknowledge the college reps before sitting down. Acknowledgment usually comes in the form of a brief smile and a “Thank You” before you turn to take your seat again.

Bring a recorded accompaniment. We will have a CD/iPod player available. Please record only your selection on your CD, or label your CD with the appropriate track number so the person playing your music can find it easily. Please have your iPod cued to the appropriate selection.

Give yourself enough introduction music to find the key, pitch, and rhythm, keeping in mind your time constraints.

Sing theatre music. Do not sing music from the radio or pop music.

Sing selections within your range. Make sure the song can be sung in a comfortable pitch, key, volume, rhythm, and attitude. Plan to sing only a brief section of the song.

Do not sing if that isn’t your strongest talent. Don’t feel you have to sing.

Present your monologue first, then nod to your accompanist to begin the song selection. You do not need to speak or explain anything between the selections.

You may not sing a cappella. If you do not have a CD or an iPod you cannot sing during your audition. Your CD cannot contain any vocals of any kind on it. The college reps have made these requests.

Design/Tech/Theatre Ed Audition Tips

How do I prepare for my Technical Audition/Theatre Educator Audition?

Prepare a presentation that shows the kind of work you have done in technical theatre. Be prepared to discuss the projects you have worked on and your interest and achievements in technical theatre. You may bring and use models and visual aids, but your strengths will shine best in a portfolio. You will be given a table in the Foundry A & B ballrooms for your portfolio to be displayed all conference and the Presentation time slot will be a time when you will give a 3 minute abridged presentation of your portfolio to the college reps. Electrical outlets may be available, but extension cords will not be provided.

If you are auditioning for the theatre educator scholarship, prepare drama lesson plans for one week for any level drama class. You may also prepare and display a portfolio and/or display board showing your experiences in the area of theatre education.You will have a table to display portfolio in Foundry A & B ballroom, and will present a 3 minute abridged portfolio to the college reps. 

During the college tech audition time, you will present a 3 min max presentation of your portfolio. We recommend a powerpoint of some sort. The last 30 min the college representatives will come to you to view and discuss your work. Show what you do well. A well organized, enthusiastic presentation of your work and portfolio demonstrates to the college representative what you’ve done and suggests what you will be capable of doing in the future.

Visit the Educational Theatre Association web site for more helpful advice.

How do I prepare my Design/Tech/Theatre Ed Portfolio?

You’ll want to show college reps some visual documentation of your past work, photographs, sketches, draftings, renderings, and organizational paperwork—all organized and contained in an easily transportable folder, case, or notebook portfolio. Much of your portfolio will consist of photographs: of props, costumes, or scenery you’ve built; of three-dimensional models you’ve constructed for class projects; and of productions, if you’ve had the opportunity to design sets, lighting, or costumes. Process photos, taken at key steps in the construction of an item or the painting of a set, illustrate craftsmanship and are good to have. Include only sharp, color-accurate photographs of your best work.

High-quality color copies or laser prints may also be used. Mount the pictures neatly on pages in your portfolio binder, and label each one with the title of the show, the theatre that produced it, and information about your own role in creating the item or moment pictured.

As for drawings, renderings, and draftings, make selections with a critical eye. Include class projects as well as work you’ve done on actual productions. If, as often happens in the race to opening night, you didn’t have time to do your best rendering or drafting on the originals, it’s perfectly okay to redo them. You may also include paintings or drawings that have nothing to do with theatre work, since they can show a lot about your skills and how well you deal with light and shadow, perspective, and color.

Paperwork is another element of the tech portfolio, and for lighting and sound technicians and stage managers, it’s the most important. Completed lighting cue sheets, hookup sheets, and gel sheets, along with a drafted light design, show a familiarity with the level of precision that’s needed for successful lighting work. Sound cue sheets and system diagrams provide some evidence of an audio technician’s skill. Stage managers can include completed show prompt books, cast and crew contact sheets, rehearsal schedules, and other samples of organizational and communication expertise. Make sure your paperwork fits standard formats (Broadway Press’s Backstage Forms is a good resource), and if your original show materials are a mess, copy them over and make them presentable.

All drawings or models must be to scale. (1/4” = 1’ or ½” = 1’)

You should be very familiar with your own school theatre spaces. You should know dimensions, instruments available, limitations, etc.

Thespian Scholarship Audition Tips

How do I prepare for my Interview?

If you are auditioning for a Thespian scholarship, you will have 8 (eight) minutes with the scholarship adjudicators, during which time you will interview and audition. If you work hard preparing your audition pieces and/or your portfolio, the interview should be easy. The scholarship adjudicators will be looking for clues to your character, your dedication to theatre, your ability to solve problems, your work ethic, and your personality. They will want to know about your involvement in your Thespian troupe and will probably ask specific questions about your activities. They’ll also ask you about your plans and goals; be ready to talk intelligently and confidently about what you want to do.