Open Forum

Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

  • 1.  Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 29 days ago
    I'd love to hear from some folks who have a school chapter governed by something outside the traditional President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer. Do you have a student advisory board? Committees?  Reps from each grade?
    Thanks!

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    Elana Kepner
    Theatre Instructor
    The Oakwood School
    Greenville NC
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  • 2.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 29 days ago
    We have a Board of Officers.  We meet monthly to plan meetings and events and each officer is expected to participate.  They rotate hosting, publicity, activities and such for each meeting and chair various committees and events.  I moved to this structure many years ago as the traditional set up leaned more towards the President doing everything (sometimes because they were domineering and sometimes because no one else stepped up) and we had a few instances of the secretary gifting points to friends.  I do the points now and I have found the Board structure distributes ownership/power within the troupe much more evenly. It's worked for us.

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    Amy Learn
    Ballwin MO
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  • 3.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 29 days ago
    Thanks for your response!  How many board members do you have and what is the size of your group overall?

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    Elana Kepner
    Theatre Instructor
    The Oakwood School
    Greenville NC
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  • 4.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 29 days ago
    We have a program of around 60 kiddos and currently I have 7 officers.  I try to be sure to get a mix of grade levels and a good mix of cast/crew/tech folks.  Also, our officers apply and sign a commitment contract,  then are selected by the adult sponsorship team and someone from outside the team so there is no issue or accusation of playing favorites.

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    Amy Learn
    Ballwin MO
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  • 5.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 16 days ago
    Do you have a copy of this commitment contract?  For two years running we've had one Thespian officer (a different one each year) who has decided to not participate, but still expects to remain an officer.  This is a new phenomenon for us so I've not really had a good strategy for handling it.  Thanks!

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    Holly Striska
    Theater Teacher
    Berwyn IL
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  • 6.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 29 days ago
    We have President,VP, Treasurer, and Secretary, but we also have a Social Advisor he does our social events like bowling and arranging going to see other theatre events.

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    Amanda Gwin
    Carmel IN
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  • 7.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 27 days ago
    I instituted producers several years ago after three years of the popular students got the officer position and ended up not following through on their duties!  Students who would like to be considered bto be producers fill out a form which includes an essay which asks them to tell why they would be a good producer and what they bring to the group. Students can nominate other students. The forms have a definite due date. When all are handed in my tech director, my assistant and I read the applications and make the final decision. We usually have six producers. This year we have eight because we needed to balance the number of seniors with number of underclassmen. The producers work as a team. One of the producers is the student tech director. When we host a festival each producer leads a committee. This works much better than officers and no one gets all the power or it gets to good off.

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    Cathy Archer
    Rutland VT
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  • 8.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 27 days ago
    We have a President and VP, but then we form a Leadership Team with a representative from each grade level and a representative at large.  Each Leadership Team Member chooses an area to specialize-- IE: props, costumes, etc.  Then, they serve as the committee chairperson for that technical area.  This year we appointed a "Director of Wow" from our Leadership Team-- their job is to encourage us in new and different ways-- like eating pomegranate as a snack at rehearsal or putting together a line read over coffee for those who can attend at the local coffee shop.  That sort of thing.  I think it really adds a sense of fun and surprise and helps build morale.

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    Michael Johnson
    Trinity NC
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  • 9.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 27 days ago
    We have the traditional officers but I also have a representative from each grade and together they for the executive board.





  • 10.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 26 days ago
    We chose to have a Thespian Council to distribute the workload equally. I handle the points and finances, but they handle planning/events/induction ceremony. I tell them at the beginning of the year that the troupe can be as dynamic or as dull as they want--it's their responsibility to be the driving force. Some years are better than others, but I think it's important not to make the title "in name only." The members vote on the Council each spring for the following year. While it tends to go toward the "popular" kids who end up being mostly seniors, 90% of the time, they are the hardest working kids anyway.

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    Maralie Medlin
    Director of Fine Arts
    Gaston Christian School
    Gastonia, NC
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  • 11.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 26 days ago
    We had
    President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Historian, Booster Liaison, State Thespian Liaison. The Booster Liaison attended all Parent Booster meetings and the State Thespian Liaison was responsible for attending all State Thespian Board meetings.

    Side note - We also had a provision in our Thespian Constitution that allowed for a recall of any Thespian officer not fulfilling their duty. This was added to our constitution after a particularly bad crop of officers and we did not have that problem again.

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    Robert Smith
    VA Co-Chapter Director
    Retired
    Centreville VA
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  • 12.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 25 days ago
    Just as an update for anyone who is curious:  I decided to go with a Board of Officers/ Advisory Board made up of three students.  Six students have self- nominated, submitted a statement of interest and during our meeting today the troupe will vote on up three folks from the list.  I have told them that they  can get 3 points for serving as an officer, but only if they earn the hours.  Obviously they can earn many more points based on their activities, but I am not just giving out points or a title because they were elected.  Ours is a small (13 inducted member) troupe at a small school, and we haven't had a very active or motivated group up to this point, so my hope is giving these three folks equal responsiblity will give them some ownership over activites and some leadership duties.



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    Elana Kepner
    Theatre Instructor
    The Oakwood School
    Greenville NC
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  • 13.  RE: Alternatives to Thespian Officers?

    Posted 25 days ago
    We’re a Junior Troupe that has Class Rep. for Grades 4-8 & a Troupe Historian position in addition to the usual 4 positions. All are not voting members until Induction (Gr.7-8) so we call them “Acting” members until then: “Acting Treasurer”.

    Maria Stadtmueller
    Kendall Park, NJ

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