The Oregon Thespians State Festival by the Numbers:  1316 Thespians representing 64 high schools, 214 Junior Thespians representing 8 middle schools, 108 Showcase Auditions, 96 Technical Entries, 38 one act plays, 86 workshops, 28 venues, and $2515 raised for Broadway Cares / Equity Fights Aids!  Fantastic Thespians indeed!

Now turn your focus to summer, Lincoln, Camp Thespis, and laying the groundwork for a terrific 2017-2018 Thespian Season.

Go, Team Oregon!

Where The Fantastic Thespians Are!

Okay, Fantastic Thespians, pack those suitcases and get yourself ready for three days of theatrical magic.  FANTASTIC THESPIANS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM swoops into Salem this week, and the schedule goes online today!

Use GUIDEBOOK to stay up to date on all the goings-on.  You can download the app for iOS or Android, and get the Guide to this weekend’s Festival.  Just click here!  Your guide will update any time you go online,  but will be available to you even when you’re not online.  It’s your best way to get connected!

If you need a paper copy, you can print a pdf of the basic schedule, including workshop and one-act times and descriptions (links below).  No printed copies will be distributed at the Festival!  Guidebook is the way to go (because once something is put in print, you know it’s going to change).  Get all the info here!

PDF of Workshop Schedule

PDF of One Act Descriptions


YOU!  Yes, YOU!  You are Oregon Thespians.  Help us celebrate our successes and pave the way for a productive future by nominating yourself or others for awards and leadership positions within the organization.

Students can apply to become State Thespian Officers (STO).  Complete information can be found by clicking here.  STO attend and lead all major Thespian events, including Camp Thespis, Leadership Summit, Improv, Regionals and State, and participate in five Board Meetings each year.  It’s a big commitment, but check it out!

We need Troupe Directors to nominate themselves or others for Board Positions.  We also have several awards we want our Troupe Directors to learn about.  Click here to nominate someone, or to learn more about the several honors available (including grant assistance for Troupe Directors to attend the annual EdTA Conference in the Fall).

Finally, consider having your Troupe give an Honor Troupe presentation at State. Click here to learn more about Honor Troupe and how you can help us spotlight more Fantastic Thespians (and where to find them!).


Rectangular and round copyright rubber stamp vectors

The 2016 Regional Acting Competitions are on February 4 – NW at Glencoe HS, Hillsboro; NE at Rex Putnam HS, Milwaukie; S at Central HS, Indepence.

Registration is still a ways away, but it’s not too early to consider your selections.  Remember that students can enter up to three events.  No more than two can be musical events, and no student may enter any event more than once.  Students may also only enter one event from each of the non-musical event ‘columns.’  Column A events are Solo Acting, Pantomime and Group Acting.  Column B events are Duo Dramatic Acting and Duo Comedic Acting.  Again, the entry limit per student is three total events.

Each troupe also has a limit to the number of entries they can register for each event.  Troupe Directors have this information.

All selections must be from published works written for the theatre.  Original scripts, non-published sources, or material written for television, movies, or recordings, cabarets, and concerts are not permitted.  If you hope to participate in the National Individual Events Showcase (NIES) in Lincoln, at the International Thespian Festival, you will want to review the information regarding material selection and performance rights found in the 2016-2017 NIES Guidelines. In Lincoln, you must provide proof that you have obtained the publisher’s permission to perform any non-musical work (musical events do not require permission in this setting).  There is some very helpful information about this on the last few pages of the NIES Guidelines.

We do not require you to show proof of permission at Regionals or State for any events in Oregon, but material must still be from a published source and written for the theatre.

Keep in mind that just because a script or score is available to view or download online does not mean the work has been published.  The internet has unfortunately made it easy for people to unwittingly become involved in copyright infringement, especially when it comes to sheet music.  If you don’t think this is a big deal to the copyright owners involved, check out what some of your favorite Broadway composers have to say in this Playbill article, or in this catchy YouTube tune which features some familiar faces.

Pantomime is the odd-man-out when it comes to these guidelines.  There is no longer a Pantomime event at the International Festival but we still have it in Oregon, probably because — at about the time they were phasing it out in Lincoln — we all got see this student performance in our Oregon Showcase.  There is a long history of quality Pantomime entries in Oregon, and we’ll keep supporting that kind of work!

Except for Pantomime (which is an Oregon-only event), we align our event rules and guidelines at Regionals and State with the NIES Guidelines, so review this material as you begin rehearsing and preparing to blow us all away.

… and yes … HAMILTON is now published.





The Oregon Chapter of The Educational Theatre Association facilitates student-centered activities through Oregon Thespians, and educator-centered activities through the Oregon Theatre Educators Association (OTEA).


Who: OTEA – a bunch of theatre educators from around Oregon

What: A day-long conference including a panel discussion and 4 workshop sessions

Where: Newport, Oregon – Elizabeth Street Inn and the Newport Performing Arts Center

When: Friday, October 14, starting at 9:00 a.m., ending Saturday, October 15 at 12:00 noon.

Why: This is Oregon’s only statewide professional development directed solely at theatre educators.  Give yourself the gift of time on the coast with your colleagues, further developing your craft.  Click here for complete information.



yesandThis weekend, more than 400 Thespians will gather in Bend, OR to create spontaneous theatre together.  The 2016 Improv Festival will feature a few new elements, designed to put more improvisation in the mix.

During their (abbreviated) prep time, teams will have specific instructions to follow, guiding them to create a 4 minute scene (max) around the prompts and inspirations given.  Then, during each round, a new element will be introduced which must be incorporated into the scene.  The scene will never be the same all day!

Here’s the revised evaluation form the judges will be using.

Troupes should CLICK HERE for important scheduling information, including notes about options for lunch and a slightly later start time.


rsgoAfter a wildly successful and record-breaking CAMP THESPIS, the 2016-2017 Thespian Year is off to a great start!  There are two immediate things to attend to:

LEADERSHIP SUMMIT 2016 is September 24 and 25 in Ashland!  Each Oregon Thespian Troupe is invited to send two delegates.  Homestays are available Saturday night and all registered delegates will see THE WIZ at the Elizabethan Theatre at Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  The summit begins at 1:30 pm on Saturday, September 24 and concludes at Noon on Sunday, September 25.  This event is free, but a deposit must be paid to secure your participation.  Click here for more information.

THE 2016 IMPROV FESTIVAL is October 1 at Summit HS in Bend, and this year’s event will feature a trial run of some new features!  This year, teams will have less time to prepare and receive new prompts in each of their rounds!  It’s improv all day!  Junior Thespians are also invited to attend.  Click here for more information.

Deadline for registering for Leadership Summit is Friday, September 9 (name changes will be allowed through September 22).  Click here!

Deadline for registering for IMPROV is Thursday, September 22.  Click here!

Looking Ahead to Next Year


Here are the major Thespian Event dates for next year.  Check back for updates as locations are finalized!

Camp Thespis – Camp Angelos, Corbett – August 8-10, 2016

EdTA Annual Conference – Las Vegas, NV – September 15-18, 2016

Oregon Leadership Summit – Ashland – September 24-25, 2016

Improv Festival – Summit HS, Bend – October 1, 2016

OTEA Conference – Newport – October 14-15, 2016

Junior Thespian Play Day – Conestoga Middle School, Beaverton – January 21, 2017

Regionals – NORTHWEST at Glencoe HS, Hillsboro; NORTHEAST at Rex Putnam HS, Milwaukie; SOUTH at Central HS, Independence – February 4, 2017

State – Salem – April 6-8, 2017

Congratulations, Team Oregon!

State PicThe 2016 Oregon Thespians State Festival by the numbers: 59 High Schools, 9 Middle Schools, 1297 Thespians, 272 Junior Thespians, 25 Locations, 120 Showcase Auditions, 92 Design/Tech Entries, 69 Workshops, 18 Guest Artists, 37 One Acts, 3 Main Stage Productions, 2 Awesome Dances, and $4510 raised for Broadway Cares / Equity Fights AIDS ($2369 in one minute!).  State Wars.  It’s true.  All of it.

Preliminary dates have been set for 2016-2017 events:  Camp Thespis (August 8-10, 2016); Oregon Leadership Summit (September 24-25, 2016); Improv Festival (October 1, 2016); Regionals (February 4, 2017); and State (April 6-8, 2017).  EdTA’s Annual Conference (in Las Vegas) is September 15-18, 2017.


guidebook-iconThe center of Oregon’s Educational Theatre Galaxy is Salem, this weekend, as STATE WARS begins.  Nearly 1300 Thespians will create three days of theatrical adventure, celebrating excellence throughout the state.  On Friday, over 250 Junior Thespians will join the mix!

To stay on top of it all, DOWNLOAD GUIDEBOOK, the digital Festival Program available on iOS, Android, and the web.  Click here now!

If you would like a printed copy, you can download it here.  Printed copies will not be distributed at the Festival.

Get ready for workshops, one-acts, main stage productions, auditions, exhibitions, and maybe a little dancing to cap off the day.  See you in Salem!