So You’re Going to State Festival!
Everything You Need to Know about Festival 2009
ALL STATE SHOW by Tyler Mercer
A great way to get together with fellow California Thespians is to audition for the Festival All State Show. The show is divided into two separate, themed acts (Act 1: “A
Way Back to Then”; Act 2: “Something’s Coming”). If you signed up for the All State show when you sent in your registration, you’ll be auditioning for your act’s directors the first day of Festival (Friday). After Friday night’s all-festival event, a cast list is posted
of students who fit the directors’ vision for each act. If you make the All State show –
congratulations! You’ll have the opportunity to work with students and directors from all over the state in preparation for the final performance on Sunday morning. If you don’t make it – don’t worry! Sometimes directors are very selective about the material
fitting their vision for the act, and it doesn’t necessarily mean you weren’t the best performer.
INDIVIDUAL EVENTS by Amy Northrop
If you’ve registered for an Individual Event, you’ve signed yourself up for a great experience! The first day of festival, you will be given information about when and where your IE audition will be held. When you arrive in the room, there will be a table of 3-5 judges who have been watching IE performances all day. Impress them with a smile and a good attitude! Nothing puts a damper on an audition more than a grumpy, difficult mood. After you perform your piece, you’re free to go enjoy the rest of the day
at the festival. The next morning, you may be invited to Callback Auditions for your category – this means that the judges liked you, and want to see you again for further evaluation. However, not all categories have Callback Auditions, so don’t worry if you
can’t find a list for your IE. Sunday morning, IE winners are announced and prizes are awarded. However, even if you don’t place for your IE, your troupe director will receive the judges’ evaluation forms, which will provide you with great feedback about what
helped or hindered your performance, and what you can do to improve for next time. So really, you can’t lose with IE’s!
SHOWCASE by Andrea Santana
While the California State Thespian Festival holds many events that require prior registration, the festival also offers many activities that require no previous paperwork. One such event is called “Showcase” and is held on Friday afternoon. Students can sign up at the Information Booth for a 3-minute performance that can showcase a host of different talents. While “Showcase” can display scenes, monologues, and songs, unlike many festival events, it is not limited to merely acting and singing. Students are encouraged to showcase unique talents such as juggling, clogging, and guitar playing. Students are also encouraged to watch other students showcase their talents after their own performances. Don’t miss your opportunity to showcase your individuality!
PLAYWORKS by Kimberlee Raymond
Imagine the chance to see your words come to life on stage in front of a thousand people. For three young playwrights this will be reality due to their play’s selection as
part of the Playworks program at California Thespian Festival 2009. In early January, young playwrights submitted their scripts for review. The plays selected will be assigned an adult director and dramaturge. Together the student and these adults will cast and put together a staged reading of the piece. While the idea of putting together a show in less than two full days seems daunting, nevertheless it is possible with rehearsals in the late nights and early mornings. A new addition this year is the movement of the Playworks program to Main Stage so that all Thespians in attendance will be able to view the work of their peers. All festival-attendees are encouraged to try-out for a part in these plays.
SENIOR SCHOLARSHIP AUDITIONS by Faith Kearns
In this economy, who couldn’t use a leg up? Senior Scholarship Auditions are a great way to compete for a little extra cash towards your arts education. To compete you need to either be a performer, techician, or future theatre educator planning to major or minor in the arts in college. Each school may only send one student of each to compete at festival, so it’s important to be organized and make decisions on your pieces
(if you’re a performer) and draft your portfolio (in you’re a technician) way in advance to facilitate changes and improvements. As always, the Guidebook has all the little details that’ll drive you crazy: five minute time limit, everything that needs to be
included in your audition. A huge part of the process is, of course, the interview. A board of judges will need to get to know you and your expertise before allotting any type of monetary prize. Though this can be stressful, the most important thing to remember is to just relax and be yourself. As a performer you’ll have up to three pieces ready to go by the point of the interview, and technicians and future theatre educators portfolios and presentations- you have your accomplishments stacked up with you, and that’s always comforting. Break a leg to everyone competing this year!
WORKSHOPS by Kaye Briones
Doris Roberts (Everybody Loves Raymond) is 79 years old and she still goes to acting workshops every week. So, what does that tell us? No matter how young, how old, or how experienced we may be, there is always something new to learn; this applies to
anyone seeking to perfect his or her craft. As Thespians, we have made the pledge to strive for excellence, and one way to go about that is to take advantage of every opportunity we have to discover and learn. Fortunately, the 2009 CA State Festival delegates will have a chance to attend workshops on the Friday and Saturday of the Festival. On Friday from 12:00 to 4:00, open workshops are available after registration. The following day, delegates will be designated two workshops centered on various aspects of theatre. They range from stage management to Comedy Sportz. Once assigned, workshops operate somewhat like trading cards. As long as you have two to attend, go ahead, trade with your friends, expand your minds, and go to the workshops! See you at Festival 2009! The clock is ticking!
DANCES by Briana Booth
Let your inner Thespian loose on the dance floor Friday and Saturday night after the All Festival Events! Dress according to the theme to spice things up, but please remember to be APPROPRIATE. Enjoy meeting new people and dancing the night away with your friends! This year's dance themes are "Time Warp" and "Back to the Future."
JR. TROUPES AT FESTIVAL by Adrian Rodriguez
There are many things to do at the California State Thespian Festival for our Jr. Troupes. After orientation, students are able to show their stuff at the Open Mic, or check out what is being sold at the Thespian Store. The day’s All Festival event will feature “You’re
a Good Man, Charlie Brown” performed by troupe #6686, Nipomo High School, the Individual Event Winners, and speeches by next year’s student state board hopefuls. Two workshops will also be available, varying from Shakespeare to dream-college seminars. Students will be able to exchange workshop tickets.
CALIFORNIA YOUTH-IN-THEATRE DAY by Tyler Mercer
One of the most fantastic opportunities available to young high school theatre students is California Youth-In-Theatre Day in Sacramento, California. Founded by theatre educator Gai Jones approximately 12 years ago, CAYIT is a one-day festival geared towards promoting funding for the arts in education. The day begins with a breakfast at the California State Capitol, where students meet with their local legislatures and representatives. The festivities then continue down the street at the Sacramento Theatre Company, where award-winning theatre students from all over California perform their favorite pieces as they promote the role of the arts in education. This
year’s California Youth-In-Theatre Day will take place on March 24, 2009. For more
information about next year’s CAYIT or to audition for a scholarship, please contact Gai Jones.