June 13, 2013
This school year, for the first time in the history of the organization, more than 5,000 Junior Thespians were inducted into the International Thespian Society, the Educational Theatre Association’s student honorary.
“Junior Thespians are so important to our organization and future, as they build interest and demand for theatre in schools at both the middle and high school level. Middle school can be a tough time for students, and theatre can make a positive impact in their development,” Julie Woffington, Executive Director of EdTA said.
The 2013 Junior Thespian Festival in Augusta, Georgia saw record attendance—approximately 500 delegates from eight states. And the Georgia Junior Thespians brought the first ever Junior Thespian all-state show, Into the Woods, to the Junior Thespian Festival main stage.
This year’s number of Junior Thespian inductees more than doubles that of 2004, 2,584. In the past nine years, a total of 33,143 young artists have been inducted into ITS as Junior Thespians.
Director of Membership David LaFleche said that EdTA has grown its resources for teachers and students, strengthened the Junior Thespian Festival, and worked with chapters to support middle school drama.
“It’s very exciting to see,” LaFleche said. “People understand how important it is to have theatre in schools.”