Frequently Asked Questions


1. General Information

The Virtual International Thespian Festival is the ultimate celebration of school theatre. For one week every summer, Thespians and other theatre fans from around the globe gather for the best performances, interactive workshops led by top teaching artists, and auditions with premier colleges and universities in a community-centered experience like no other. Plus, Thespians have the option to showcase their talents in the Thespy® Awards program, earning valuable recognition and feedback for their work on an international level.


ITF is especially for:  

  • Thespians, Junior Thespians, and their troupe directors  

  • Theatre students (grade 6-12) who want to experience the best shows and workshops (chaperones required)  

  • Theatre teachers who want to give their students a once-in-a-lifetime experience and earn professional development hours  

  • College representatives eager to meet talent for their programs  

  • Industry representatives who serve the school theatre market 


You should attend ITF because...  

  • you love theatre and want to celebrate the efforts of students in the world of educational theatre  

  • you want your students to bond with peers in their areas of interest and learn from one another  

  • to expose your students to renowned collegiate theatre programs where they can continue their education  

  • to take part in PDIs and workshops from industry professionals that allow you to expand your theatre skills  

  • to earn international recognition for the hard work you and your Thespians put into your training and productions  

  • to explore the latest theatre technology, resources, and licensing materials  

  • because it’s FUN! 


ITF will be held June 20-24, 2022. 


ITF will be held on the campus of Indiana University Bloomington in Bloomington, Indiana. 


Yes! We have a number of unique sponsorship and exhibit opportunities available. For more information, contact Angel Wuellner at awuellner@schooltheatre.org.


EdTA anticipates returning to in-person events beginning in 2022, provided social distancing requirements of future meeting locations allow for in-person events. 
 
ITF is traditionally held the last full week of June and will be held on campus at Indiana University Bloomington in Bloomington, IN the following dates: 
 
June 20 - 24, 2022 
June 19 - 23, 2023 
June 24 - 28, 2024 
June 23 - 27, 2025 


Absolutely! If you are working toward your Thespian induction, participating in ITF is a great way to earn points. In general, you can earn one point per day attended. Troupe directors have discretion over the actual points awarded, so talk to your teacher about how to earn the maximum points possible from your participation. You may need to demonstrate which workshops you attended, for example, or new things that you learned as a result of attending. 
 
Download our handy points sheet?for more ideas to earn Thespian induction. 


2. Health and Safety

Protecting the health and safety of all ITF attendees is our top priority. As such, ITF will require that all attendees be fully vaccinated (vaccine date plus two weeks). This policy is based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy for Pediatrics, as well as the policy of our host college, Indiana University, requiring that all students, faculty, and staff be vaccinated. The ITF policy is also consistent with reopening practices and guidelines enacted by the Actors’ Equity Association and producers of Broadway and touring productions. 


Exemptions will be considered only for those who cannot receive a vaccine due to certain medical conditions. Please email events@schooltheatre.org and ask to speak with our staff about your specific situation. 


Indiana University theatres and other venues are currently operating at full capacity. Because of the vaccination requirement, we do not anticipate a need to limit capacity in theatres, classrooms, dorms, and dining halls — but we will be required to follow the university’s rules for large events, which may change by the dates of ITF. 

Currently, IU’s Auditorium requires all theatregoers wear masks, regardless of vaccination status. Each ITF attendee will receive a mask. 

In addition, many event processes, including registration check-in and theatre ticketing, will go paperless to limit one-to-one contact. 


Yes! Please email events@schooltheatre.org for an official letter you can supply to your administration.


3. Main Stage Productions

Any Thespian troupe can submit its production to be considered for the ITF main stage. Each director who applies will receive an adjudication for educational purposes. For ITF 2022, adjudications will happen remotely/digitally: Our goal is to make the process accessible to the most troupes and to mitigate health risks involved with adjudicator travel. Eight shows will be invited to participate. Learn more about submitting your show


We do not censor. We never want to tell ITF audiences what they can and cannot watch. Some schools allow their theatre departments to present shows with mature content, which enables those schools to bring such shows to the ITF. Shows featuring mature content are noted as such. 

See more Main Stage FAQs on the Main Stage page


4. Chapter Select Performances

ITF 2022 will showcase at least 20 outstanding one-acts nominated by their chapters. Chapter directors must submit their recommendations to EdTA by April 1, 2022. Slots are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.  For more information, see the application and submission details


5. Thespy® Awards

The International Thespian Excellence Awards, or Thespys for short (formerly National Individual Events), recognize the highest level of achievement in school theatre performance and technical theatre. To participate at ITF, students must first earn an overall Superior score at a qualifying event. Qualifiers who earn the top Superior scores in their categories at ITF earn Thespy Awards. Learn more about the Thespys


6. College Auditions

The unified college audition program is open only to inducted Thespians who are in the class of 2023. At ITF, you’ll have the opportunity to audition for more than 60 colleges and universities, and even set up one-on-one appointments during the college fair. You must purchase the audition add-on during registration by May 11, 2022, and submit your audition materials by June 1, 2022. Attendees who have registered for college auditions will receive an email with instructions on how to submit their audition application via OpenWater.   

All students will be welcome to visit the booths and speak to representatives at our college fair. 

 


7. Programs & Performance Opportunities

Students are invited to audition for staged readings that will take place during ITF. These are great opportunities for students to learn firsthand how new works are developed for the stage. The Tech Challenge allows technicians to show off their skills. 


If pursuing college admission and scholarships for theatre is your dream, ITF is a great place to make it happen. 
 
Juniors can participate in college auditions for the chance to wow reps from 60+ college theatre programs nationwide. Colleges who attend ITF award admission and scholarships to ITF attendees each year. 
 
Thespians can earn scholarships through the Thespy® Awards program. Top-scoring participants at the international level will be automatically eligible for nearly $40,000 in Grace Kelly Scholarships and the Amy Bennett Musical Theatre Scholarship. Those eligible will participate in an interview process to determine the winners. 
 
If you do not qualify for the Thespys, EdTA offers several merit-based scholarships. Learn more about other EdTA scholarship opportunities


The former Playworks competition is now the Playwriting category of the Thespy® Awards. As before, any student writer may submit a script, and the winners will work with directors and casts to develop their plays and present staged readings at ITF. As part of the Thespys, all students who enter will receive an adjudication of their work. See Thespys.org for details. 

Musicalworks, Criticworks, and Filmworks will not happen at ITF; filmmaking students can participate in the short film categories of the Thespy Awards.  

We anticipate that ITF 2022 will include a Play Commission and Musical Commission, pending financial support from our sponsors. 


8. Registration

Online registration will open in January 2022 and close May 11, 2022. The deadline to submit materials for Thespy® and college auditions is June 1, 2022. 


Registration fees will be announced in the fall of 2021. 


All ITF attendees who are 18 or older at the time of the event must complete a background check. After registering for ITF, you will receive an email from Trak-1/PeopleFacts within seven business days that includes instructions on how to complete the process. Note: This email will not come from EdTA, and this is not a credit check. After you complete the instructions in the email and submit your information, no further action is needed. EdTA will reach out to you if an issue is flagged. You can sign up to have the results of the background check mailed to you. The deadline to complete your background check for ITF 2022 is June 8, 2022. If you have any questions or concerns, please email events@schooltheatre.org.


All ITF attendees who are under the age of 18 at the time of the event must have parent/guardian consent forms on file. During registration, you will be asked to provide an email address for all attendees under 18 years of age. The parents/guardians will receive an email with instructions to complete the consent forms within seven business days. Once the form has been submitted to EdTA, the parent/guardian will receive a confirmation email, and no further action is needed. The deadline to submit parent/guardian consent forms is June 8, 2022. Any attendees whose parent/guardian has not submitted a consent form by this date will be contacted. If you have any questions or concerns, please email events@schooltheatre.org.


9. Payments

If you are registering individually (either as student or an adult) and NOT attending with a troupe:  

  • Credit card (American Express, Mastercard, Visa)  

If you are registering your troupe, we accept the following payment methods:  

  • Credit Card (American Express, Mastercard, Visa)  

  • Check  


Full refunds, less a $100 administrative fee, will be issued for any cancellation requests submitted via email at events@schooltheatre.org by May 11, 2022. Cancellation requests received after that date will receive a refund, less a $400 registration fee. No cancellation refunds will be issued for no-shows. Exceptions will be considered for COVID-19 travel restrictions.  

Substitutions are gladly accepted. Substitution requests must be submitted no later than June 8, 2022. Please submit a written request to events@schooltheatre.org. Only one substitution is permitted per original registrant. The individual submitting the substitution request is responsible for all financial obligations (any balance due) associated with that substitution. 


Yes! Watch for more information on financial assistance when the grant cycle for the 2021-22 school year opens this fall. 

Keep checking this page, as more information will be added about the event as details are confirmed. If you need help with a question not answered here, contact events@schooltheatre.org. Direct questions about the Thespy® Awards to thespys@schooltheatre.org


Keep checking this page, as we will add more information about the event as details are confirmed. If you need help with a question not answered here, contact events@schooltheatre.org. Direct questions about the Thespy Awards to thespys@schooltheatre.org.

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