Director's Guide to the NE Theatre Festival

Here are some things about the NE Theatre Festival that may be different from your state festival and may be unexpected.

Student Forums: After each block of shows, typically 2 or 3, all students attend forums where they get to discuss the shows they have just seen with students from those shows. 

Director Forums: Directors meet after each block of shows for a discussion similar to that of the student forums and at the same time. All directors should attend all session.

Introductory Meetings: Before the first performance of the festival there will be a brief meeting of the directors and the Council members. All directors must attend. At this meeting, basic and last minute information will be distributed. Directors will discuss content notification issues. At the same time all students will be attending introductory meetings of their forum groups. These are also ice breakers.

No Competition: There will be no judges, no ratings, no awards. This is the pinnacle. This is a true festival, a celebration and sharing of theatre.

No Timers: You are expected to adhere to your own state's rules regarding length of show, however, there will be no one at the NE Festival with a timer. The only timer will be to keep your technical rehearsal on schedule. Typically technical rehearsals are 50 minutes and start at 1 hour intervals allowing 10 minutes for changeover.

Commendations: Your students will be writing a commendation for one other school. At the opening directors' meeting you will learn the show about which your students will write. In addition the Council will be writing commendations for each show.

Student Congress: On the final day of the festival, usually during breakfast, there will be a meeting of the student congress. You should choose 2 students from your company to be representatives to the Student Congress. The purpose is not to critique the current festival but to suggest ideas for next year. A small contingent from next year's host site will be taking notes and will report a summary to the New England Drama Council at the conclusions of the Congress.

Light Operator: Plan for your lighting tech to run the cues on the host light board.

Workshops: There will be workshops offered during the festival. Usually there are 2 or 3 sessions. Due to scheduling of tech rehearsal and green room times, your students may not be able to attend all of these sessions.

Ceremonies: Typically there is an opening ceremony. You don't want to miss this. There will also be a closing ceremony where commendations and banners are presented.

Banquet: There will be a closing banquet. There are usually some presentations at the banquet. Folks often get a bit dressed up for the banquet.

We hope these note help you have a most enjoyable and educational experience at the festival.

New England Drama Council
Download Directors' Guide    Revised: 4/9/2017