Thespys and Auditions

Building on our festival’s success with offering Thespys, an individual/pair/small group contest supplement to our signature One-Act Play Contest, we realized how individual Thespy performances could also serve as an audition for college/university recruiters. Therefore, this year, solo Thespy performers will have the opportunity to register for one individual performance (acting or musical theatre) to also count as an audition.

Thespy Events for Auditions

Acting: Solo

Two contrasting monologues (different in period, style, mood, etc.) of one character’s lines for each; no more than three (3) minutes in combined length. One chair may be safely used. Please review EdTA’s Thespy rules for further details.

Musical Theatre: Solo

One selection from a musical theatre score written for one individual and one character to perform; no more than five (5) minutes in length; accompanied by a pre-recorded, non-vocal, digital musical accompaniment. Dialogue may be present if included in the libretto, but the performance should be primarily sung and not spoken. One chair may be safely used. Please review EdTA’s Thespy rules for further details.

For Students/Teachers/Directors:

Eligibility is limited to students enrolled in the 11th or 12th grade the same school year in which the festival is held, who plan to enter college to study theatre; juniors are strongly encouraged to apply. University-level theatre programs from across the upper Midwest have been invited to attend. The goal is to give students an opportunity to audition for college representatives while refining and enriching their skills. Advisors (teachers/directors) must register students in SpeechWire in the “Audition” category as well as in a solo Thespy event, as well as to upload a resume. Applications must be received by 10pm, Nov. 1. Late submissions may not be permitted. Requirements:

  • Noting in registration which one of the two Thespy events (Acting: Solo or Musical Theatre Performance: Solo) the student will count as their audition. While the student will be “entered” in both the Thespy contest and as an audition, they will perform once to count as both their contest selection and audition. The student may be entered in multiple Thespy events, but only one can concurrently count as an audition.
  • WISDAA is offering both in-person and virtual Thespys, so whichever medium a student uses for their Thespy entry also will count as their audition. Virtual auditions will be shared with recruiters.
  • Actor résumé uploaded to SpeechWire (see sample)

For Colleges/Universities:

  • All colleges and universities intending to participate in the audition process must book an exhibit booth (please note when registering for an exhibit if you wish to participate in auditions). Exhibitors are responsible for ensuring booths are staffed when they are attending auditions.
  • Up to TWO designated organizational representatives may attend the college/university auditions.
  • We will separately group those students pursuing higher education theatre programs from those participating only in the Thespy contest (to best respect time of higher education recruiters). We will construct the schedule at least a week prior to the festival (based on registered auditions), and share with recruiters, so they can plan their Friday of the festival, accordingly.
  • Students may choose to participate virtually with prerecorded videos, which also will be shared with recruiters (we only had a few participate virtually in the 2022 Thespy contest).
  • Please be aware that each college/university attending auditions will sent instructions for accessing student résumés. No paper résumés will be handed out, though students may bring their own.
  • Please bring your own laptop, smartphone, tablet, or other technology to use.