VA Thespian Update

VA Thespians Kudos & Happenings

May 2023: Winding Down School & Gearing Up Summer!

We hope spring seasons are coming to a strong close. We are excited to gear up for our Thespian Educator Intensive this summer and look towards an exciting fall with a statewide NYC Thespian trip! More information below & coming soon!

Follow us on social media @vathespians or Virginia Thespians for more information and updates! We would love to know how to support you this year. Please complete our 2023 Troupe Director Survey and our 2023 VTF Attendee Survey.

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STATEWIDE NYC FIELD TRIP- Register by May 20th!

Meet your 2023-24 Virginia Thespian Board!


My high school is the PA representative for "The United States of Frozen". I would love to share the show with you, your Thespian Troupes or Thespian Troupes across your state, as well as family and friends, and little people in your lives.

We are having 7 live performances of the Frozen (and I still have some limited house seats for all shows but May 6 @ 2PM) and 2 live-streaming performances. Since many of you are also Producers/Directors at your school, I'd like to encourage you to look closely at this show. The adaptation for Broadway with some added songs and scenes is good. The message is strong, particularly with what many of us are dealing with during this fraught time in education.

Disney Theatrical Group tasked all of us with adapting this show for high schools of varying size, population, technical "toys" and such. While we are almost fully LED lighting, thanks to a former student with talent and his own business, by choice, we are not really doing projection at all which Broadway, the West End, and touring productions have relied on. Given the fact that we sold out our 7 live performances in 2 days with a 1700 seat auditorium -- this is a crowd pleaser and a potential financial boost to your programs.

Dates for the live shows. To come to a live performance - email me.

  • April 27 - April 29 & May 6 @ 7:30 PM.
  • April 30 & May 7 @ 2:00 PM.

Dates for two live streaming shows on April 29 and May 6 @ 7:30 PM. It is one $35 ticket for unlimited patrons. Have a Watch Party! Have a fundraiser for your troupe or school. For any who watch the live stream, there will be a quick google doc to let us know how many are watching, where you are watching from, and if you bought some special foods (Economic Impact Survey!).

For more information about our production and to purchase live stream tickets go to I am updating the website with more content about the show almost daily.

If Love is indeed an Open Door, and, in PA at North Penn High School, we firmly believe it is, let's find a moment of joy without the difficult issues we in educational theatre are dealing with daily.

Enjoy the day.

Andrea Lee Roney

North Penn High School Theatre Teacher, Producer, Director

North Penn High Theatre Thespian Troupe 5464 Director

1340 S. Valley Forge Road, Lansdale, PA 19446


Pennsylvania Thespian Chapter Governing Board


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Teacher Tool of the Month: Summer Ideas for a Theatre Teacher 2023

Looking to add to your teacher toolbox this summer? See our suggestions list below!

1. Attend our Thespian Educator Intensive (for 15 PD/accreditation points), learn more about us as an organization/resource & meet other educators August 7-9th!

2. Take this online NYU class with +45 on-demand video lessons.

3. Take a class on Skillshare (subscription and open to SO many online self-guided classes).

4. Check out Beat by Beat with some of our favorite theatre games & more.

5. Take an online acting class with the Stella Adler Studio of Acting.

6. Attend the Valdez Theatre Conference in July in Alaska to participate & watch readings, etc.

7. Attend the Black Theatre Network Conference in July in St. Louis to define your narrative.

8. Attend the International Conference on Theatre Design, Theatre & Screen in Germany.

9. See lots of local theatre to get other show ideas for your next season(s).

10. As school starts back up , consider the EdTA Theatre Education Conference on Sept. 28-30th in St. Pete Beach, FL to explore "The Power of You" with other artists/ educators.




Thespian Educators Intensive (TEI)

Your Full Conference (FCON) registration includes:

-1 room stay on August 8th

-Daily happy hour with FREE drinks & appetizers

-Two FULL days of PD with multiple options per session

-Boxed lunches for both days from Apple Spice Catering

*You can opt for the Basic Conference (BCON) option if you are commuting, sharing a room to split the room costs with a teacher friend, or plan to stay elsewhere.

*Register here and complete this form.

*Add the item for an extra night stay if you plan to come for the optional welcome evening on August 7th.

All hotel rooms (reserved through us) & meeting spaces will be at Drury Plaza Hotel: 11049 W Broad St, Glen Allen, VA 23060

TOPICS: The 2023 topics include (you pick up to 5 across the two days):

  1. Consent Based Intimacy Direction: Learn how to help students work through intimacy on stage. It is hard to fabricate relationships with two students who barely know each other. Learn how to navigate that for various shows and scenes.

  2. Thespy Crash Course: Come learn how to prepare your students for Thespys, what to expect, what is an eligible piece or not, and more!

  3. The Art Behind Puppetry: Take part in a unit plan showcasing the movement behind puppetry. We will participate in warm-ups and activities to bring life into ordinary objects. Play with hand puppets, stick puppets and transition to group puppets similar to Japanese Bunraku. Walk away with a full set of lessons to bring to your class!

  4. Classroom Crash Course: Technical Theatre 101: This session will focus on Set Design & Construction, Stage Lighting, & Sound in the theatre. We will cover safety for each area along with fun activities and projects that the students can execute throughout the school year. A google drive will be shared with the following: slides, documents, and project layouts that you can use throughout the school year. This session will encompass how your students can drive these projects while you can guide them.

  5. Everyday SEL for Building Community & Confidence: Learn strategies for social-emotional wellness for yourself, your students and your troupe. This will include some light movement activities.

  6. Theatre for Diverse Learners: Our theatre classes can sometimes feel like a "dumping ground" for kids with a variety of needs we don't always know how to meet. Join me for a workshop on how to differentiate theatre lessons for a variety of diverse learners to make your theatre class a more inclusive space! Teachers: bring a lesson you would like to work on modifying for various learning types.

  7. Elevating Your Next Show: Directing & Empowering Your Students: Learn how to elevate your next show through precise planning and student empowerment. Participants will explore communication techniques, how to lead student exploration, and how to grant space as well as guidance to student leaders. Students today can be lost and emotional. Learn how to boost their confidence and leadership skills in this collaborative workshop.

  8. Writing & Applying for Grants: Learn about grants accessible to you for class projects, your after school programs, for PD, and more. You will have time to share resources and respond to application prompts to help you break down and tackle applications together.


There is at least one theatre teacher job opening in Montgomery County. Follow this link: & MCPS Theatre position. Break a leg on any changes or interviews coming up! Please let us know if you have a new person coming into your job or you are changing jobs so we can keep our contacts updated. Thank you! Email for any updates you have! Have a great end of the year!

Order our thespian swag online now!

Virginia Thespians Alumni Group

Did you hear we have a Virginia Thespians Alumni Facebook group? Consider passing this along to your graduating seniors. So far, it is an inspiring network of close to 300 professionals, who can be valuable resources for your students beyond high school. These are previous Thespians who remember what it is like to be in their shoes and many of which are happy to serve as mentors. We are creating an alumni board to also fundraise resources for students going to festival, bring in more alumni guest artists, and more! If you are an alumni, consider joining it yourself! We have many more plans in store for the alumni to partner with us to support the current as well as future generations of Virginia Thespians! Join us today!
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-Thespys are to be submitted by the school director and are now OPEN until May 10th

-College auditions are virtual round 1, submitted by school directors and callbacks will be in person at ITF, registration is also open until May 10th

-Scholarship opportunities are found here!

-Directors, please take this survey to EdTA can best advocate for you & your programs!

How to Find out More...?

Check our social media accounts for EdTA, our parent organization or for VA Thespians for recent reminders and updates. Get more resources, learn more about International Thespian Society, and more! The remaining information below is a friendly reminder from previous newsletters.

ITF Punchcard & Permission Slip

See what New Kent HS sends out to their community to prepare students for ITF. Thank you to our previous Chapter Director, Tori Kesling Councill for these helpful resources!

VTF 2024 will be January 4-6th at Capital One & Hilton in Tysons Corner, VA!

We are so excited to announce next year already! Mark your calendars! Registration opens in September but start your planning now! Things to consider:

1. Do you want to bring a show? We are accepting mainstages NOW!

2. Do you want to come for one day or a full weekend? Only full weekend schools can compete now so consider fundraising, asking your administration for support, add this into your yearly calendars now to plan your season around it.

3. Will you need transportation? Reach out to nearby schools to consider sharing a bus to save on money and getting to know a nearby program.

We hope to see you there!

Check out our main 2024 spaces in the Capital One Hall & Hilton Hotel!

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Connecting with local artists

Looking to add more skills into your department? Tackle a new show or theatre discipline? We can connect you with artists! We bring in almost 100 artists with different disciplines each year. We also work with our partner, Creative Stages to bring master classes to YOU! Reach out to us or them for more information today!
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Planning a field trip soon?

Taking a school trip soon? There's a new tour company called ImpACT Tours! Click on the PDF below to read more about them!
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ITS Inductions Checklist

Here is an easy step-by-step checklist for spring inductions. Use these materials as you see fit!

1. Hold an interest meeting. Ask- Who is interested in becoming inducted into ITS?

2. Share out the point application for students to complete with their past and current theatrical experiences for certain point values.

3. Have students fill out the Member Google form, for the exact information you need to collect to put them into the official ITS/ EdTA system, and pay $35 for the one-time membership fee, which lasts them a lifetime. (More materials at the bottom of the newsletter to promote and explain ITS.)

4. Hold inductions. Here is a sample outline to use. You can create your own rituals, traditions, or if you are in a pinch, it can be less than 30 minutes before school starts or before a rehearsal for example.

5. Log into your myedta account to input all of your new inductees.

6. Pay the lump sum as the director, if your students didn't pay EdTA directly. Our suggestion is to collect the money as you typically do for school events, work with your bookkeeper or boosters to cut one check to EdTA to keep it simple.

7. Hold an end of year or semester celebration to hand out the new goodies when they are delivered to the school!

Don't have a troupe yet? Read more about the benefits and process here!

Join this art platform below for local artists, resources, and more!

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Need information to share about Thespians or VTF?

Here is a Google Slides PPT about Thespians to encourage students to join.

Here is a Festival Guide for students or new troupe directors.

Why join or have an ITS troupe? Share with students & administrators!