Know Before You Go
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Know-Before-You-Go Guide

Are you ready for the once-in-a-lifetime experience you're about to enjoy at ITF? To help you prepare, here's the information you need to know before you go.

Table of Contents

  1. Logistics
  2. Packing List
  3. Housing Check-In and -Out
  4. Registration Check-In
  5. Performances
  6. Programs/Activities
  7. Health & Medical Needs
  8. Safety & Security Rules
  9. Primary Contact and Chaperone Responsibilities


Assistance on Site

The ITF Information Desk, located in the East Lounge of the Indiana Memorial Union (IMU), will be open during the following hours:

  • Sunday, June 23: 1 – 7 p.m.
  • Monday, June 24 – Thursday, June 27: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Friday, June 28: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

You can also text us at (513) 790-4466. Our team will work diligently to reply to texts as quickly as possible upon receipt. Please note that this number is unable to accept phone calls.

Badges and Key Cards

Your ITF badge is your access pass to all ITF activities, as well as a safety device. (It also makes a wonderful souvenir!) Badges instantly identify ITF participants among IU students, staff, and other community members. Your badge's QR code contains important details needed in an emergency.

Badges must be worn around the neck. Treat your badge like your ID or your debit card – with care. We will be unable to replace lost or broken lanyards.

Campus housing is accessible via key cards that allow access to your building, floor, and room. If you misplace your key card for on-campus housing, replacements are available for $20 by reporting to the front desk of your assigned building. We request that a chaperone accompany student attendees, so an adult is aware of the circumstances.

Code of Conduct

We want ITF to be the best possible experience for all. Please review the Code of Conduct prior to arrival.

Housing Assignments

Primary Contacts will receive an email providing building assignments for your troupe/group no more than one week before the event. Room assignments will be provided at check-in.

Student key cards restrict users to their assigned floor. While all dorms will house attendees of all genders, each floor will be divided according to a gender binary. Under no circumstances should a student access a floor in use by students of the opposite gender identity (i.e., student attendees assigned to female-identifying floors should not access male-identifying floors, and vice versa).

Lost and Found

All lost and found materials returned to ITF staff will be stored at the ITF Help Desk in the East Lounge of the IMU. Participants may inquire about found items at any time the desk is open. Be prepared to provide precise descriptions of the item(s) lost. Note: Once the help desk closes at 2 p.m. on Friday, June 28, no additional lost items will be accepted, and all unrecovered items will be disposed of.


For All-Access attendees, meals will be served beginning with breakfast on Monday, June 24 and ending with dinner on Friday, June 28.

Attendees staying in McNutt and Briscoe are assigned to the McNutt Eatery. Attendees in Forest, Eigenmann, and Teter are assigned to the Forest Eatery. You must wear your ITF badge to the dining hall, and you’ll swipe your room key card upon entering. Key cards may only be used at an attendee’s assigned dining hall. Meal times during the week are as follows:

Monday, June 24 – Friday, June 28

  • Breakfast: 6:30 – 9 a.m.
  • Lunch: 11 a.m. –  2 p.m.
  • Dinner: 5 – 8 p.m.

Attendees not staying in dorms can purchase meals individually at the dining halls if they wish. Meal pleans do not include meals on Sunday, June 18, but attendees can purchase meals at the Forest or IMU eateries that day. IU Bloomington is a cashless campus.

Mobile App

The ITF program is now mobile! Download the app to have all things ITF at your fingertips. Plan your daily schedule, check out workshops, and keep an eye out for important updates. Here’s how:

  1. In your Apple or Android device, open the appropriate app store.
  2. Search “eShow Events” and click to download.
  3. In the Event Portal, search to find the International Thespian Festival 2023 and click Download.
  4. When prompted, click Start.
  5. Use the navigation menu to explore the schedule, campus map, and more.

Note: Sometimes changes take time to appear in the app due to its sync schedule. To manually force a sync to make sure the app is as up to date as possible, pull down from the home screen/navigation menu. You’ll see the app refresh with a “Last Sync” timestamp near the top of the screen (on Apple products) or at the bottom of the screen (on Android products).


Attendees should plan to bring a credit or debit card to cover incidental expenses on campus, such as food, souvenirs, and gear at the on-site Thespian Shop. IU is a cashless campus. Please note that Apple Pay/Google Pay/Samsung Pay may not be accepted at all points of sale – so having a physical debit card is highly recommended.


If you indicated that you needed parking on your housing form, you will receive a CH (community housing) parking permit upon check-in at their assigned dorm. This pass gives you access to any CH lot on campus during ITF. Each dorm has a dedicated CH lot.

Attendees staying off campus may park in paid lots throughout campus. ITF is unable to provide parking validation for attendees staying off campus.


Attendees/groups are responsible for booking their own transportation to IU’s campus, whether driving or flying. If flying into the Indianapolis International Airport, we encourage groups to book their transportation through GoExpress at the special ITF rate. If attendees have accessibility needs that need to be accommodated by GoExpress, they should include this in their reservation when submitted through provided link.

Shuttles are provided primarily for those with accessibility needs. Please act well your part by giving them priority on shuttles and walking if you are able. Shuttle access is not guaranteed for all attendees at all times. Walking is the fastest way to get around ITF: All dorms are a 15-20 minute walk from activities, while wait for shuttles is a minimum 45-60 minutes.  You can check the campus shuttle schedule on the Transportation page of the ITF website.


IU Bloomington has free wi-fi across campus that does not require a login to access. Note: the influx of users at the festival may cause the wi-fi to lag. We apologize for any inconvenience this may create. Unfortunately, ITF attendees must use the available free wi-fi option or use cellular data; no credentialed logins for other wi-fi options are available.

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Packing List


The following items will be provided for you by Indiana University and ITF:

  • Pillowcase x 1
  • Fitted Sheet x 1 and Flat Sheet (Twin XL)
  • Towel x 2
  • Pillow
  • Blanket


Consider bringing the following items with you:

  • Extra pillow or blanket if you prefer your own
  • Toiletries
  • Shower caddy
  • Shower shoes/flip flops
  • Personal care appliances (hair dryer, iron, etc.)
  • Basic first aid items (bandages, anti-biotic ointment, etc.)
  • Personal prescription/over the counter medications
  • Sunscreen
  • Umbrella/rain poncho
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Technology chargers
  • Backpack/tote/messenger bag
  • Notebook and writing utensils
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Sweater/jacket (for cold indoor spaces)
  • Earbuds

Recommended Extras

Also consider the following items:

  • Portable charger
  • Hangers
  • Instant stain remover (e.g., Tide To Go pens)
  • Air/fabric refresher (e.g., Febreze)
  • Power strip/short extension cord
  • Personal fan (dorms may get warm, and attendees do not control room temperature)
  • Non-perishable snacks (fridges are not provided in dorm rooms)
  • Semi-formal attire (for the red carpet and closing ceremony/Thespy showcase)
  • Workshop materials (sheet music, prepared monologues, dance attire, etc.)

Prohibited Items

The following items are not allowed at ITF:

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Housing Check-In and -Out

Upon arrival to IU Bloomington, all attendees staying on campus should report to their assigned dorm first. Follow these instructions to complete your housing check-in:

  1. Only the Primary Contact should enter the dorm's lobby and visit the check-in desk.
  2. Check in with the housing representative using your troupe number or the last name of the Primary Contact.
  3. Receive all room assignments and key cards.
  4. Return to group waiting outside or in your vehicle and distribute key cards. All attendees enter dorm and proceed to their respective rooms.

Once housing checking has been completed, only the Primary Contact should proceed to the ITF Registration Desk to check in. All other attendees, including chaperones, should not visit registration as space is limited. 

If you will be arriving to campus after the ITF Registration Desk closes, proceed to your assigned dorm to check in. The Primary Contact should proceed to registration the following morning. 

Check-out will take place on Saturday, June 29 any time before 12 p.m. There is not an official check-out process; please depart your dorm as needed. If you are leaving any time prior to curfew on Friday, June 28, please alert your floor captain before departing to ensure ITF has an accurate record of attendance at all times during the festival.

All groups must vacate campus housing by 12 p.m. Saturday, June 29. If for any reason you need to check out after 12 p.m., please email

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Registration Check-In

Only the Primary Contact for each group should proceed to ITF Registration Desk to check in, as space is very limited. Registration check-in will occur in the East Lounge of the Indiana Memorial Union (IMU). Upon arrival, please follow these instructions to complete your registration check-in:

  1. Registration lines will be divided by the last name of the Primary Contact. Join the appropriate line.
  2. When you arrive to the front of the line, provide your last name. You may be asked to also confirm school name and/or troupe number.
  3. Receive printed name badges for your troupe/group.
  4. If payment has not been received in full, or all required attendee forms have not been submitted, the registration representative will provide further instructions.


When making seating assignments, ITF first makes every effort to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, then by registration date. When ticketing is assigned, we seat groups together as much as possible (including students and adult chaperones). All ticket assignments will be sent to the Primary Contact for each group on or before June 13. Ticketing emails will originate from Additionally, each Primary Contact will also receive printed tickets for each member of their group at the dorm upon check-in on the IU campus.

Due to the number of attendees and seating capacities in the IU venues, ITF is using the Ruth N. Halls theatre for main stage remote screening where necessary. See below for specific details.

Unless otherwise noted, doors will open 30 minutes prior to curtain for each performance. Attendees should arrive to the venue no earlier than 1 hour prior to each performance. As much as is possible, groups seated together during ticketed performances should arrive and take their seats together.

Lost Tickets

It is important that Primary Contacts keep good track of the physical tickets issued for performances at ITF. For any issues or questions regarding your ticket reservations, including reprinting lost tickets, contact the IU ticketing office at (812) 855-1103 as soon as possible. A digital version of the lost ticket may be emailed to the Primary Contact. IU Auditorium and Musical Arts Center box offices will open 1 hour prior to curtain, but waiting to deal with a lost ticket until this time may result in delays and missed performances.    

The Color Purple

These Monday performances in the Musical Arts Center (MAC) happen concurrently with Thespy adjudications. Due to the complicated nature of Thespy scheduling, performances of The Color Purple will employ general admission open seating on a first-come, first-served basis. Attendees may begin to queue beginning 1 hour prior to the performance time. Once the venue reaches capacity, doors will be closed. No alternate overflow viewing options will be available. Attendees are recommended to attend the morning performance, if at all possible.

Opening Ceremony

Monday evening's Opening Ceremony will take place live in the IU Auditorium and will also be simulcast in the Ruth N. Halls Theatre. Attendee tickets will indicate your pre-assigned venue to view the Opening Ceremony. Both venues will employ general admission open seating for this event.

Main Stage (Tuesday–Thursday)

Matinee and evening main stage performances will take place in the IU Auditorium and the MAC, where seating is assigned. The Ruth N. Halls Theatre will simulcast performances from the MAC, with general admission open seating. Venues will be pre-assigned once registration closes. Attendees are guaranteed to attend all IU Auditorium shows live (at either the matinee or evening performance) and at least one MAC show live during the week of ITF.

Pathway Performance

Due to limited seating in the MAC, tickets for the Pathway performance must be added onto your reservation at the time of registration. This performance will require tickets for entry but employ general admission open seating. Doors will open 30 minutes prior to curtain. Attendees may begin to queue beginning 1 hour prior to the performance time. No alternate overflow viewing options will be available.

Chapter Select One-Act Showcase

The Chapter Select One-Act Showcase will be held in the Ruth N. Halls Theatre and will take place concurrently with workshop sessions. Please note that Chapter Select one-acts are not ticketed events, and general admission (non-ticketed) open seating is limited. Seat saving is not allowed. Please arrive early to secure your seat. Doors will remain open between performances.

Thespy Awards Showcase

The Thespy Awards Showcase will take place live in the IU Auditorium and will also be simulcast in the Ruth N. Halls Theatre. Attendees not staying for the duration of the evening must attend in the Ruth N. Halls Theatre. Both venues will employ general admission (non-ticketed) seating. More details about seating assignments will be made available during the week of the festival.

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College Auditions

Registered students must submit their digital audition materials no later than May 10. College representatives will schedule callbacks and interviews directly with participating students. Optional dance auditions will be held in person on June 20. Pre-registration is required. Dance auditions will be limited to the first 150 registrants, and registration instructions will be sent to all Musical Theatre Performance auditionees on June 1.

Commissioned Musical

Virtual auditions for the Commissioned Musical are accepted until May 10 via this form. Selected participants will be notified by June 16. Rehearsals will be held throughout the week culminating in a staged reading of each Friday, June 23.

Late-Night Activities

On Sunday, June 18, students can join in fun activities at the IMU, including karaoke, musical theatre trivia, and bowling and billiards. Adults are invited to a special welcome reception.

Monday through Thursday after the evening main stage performance, attendees can wind down during the hour before curfew at each dorm. Food trucks will be open for a free late-night snack, and be sure to check out Musical Mayhem, a sing-along experience with industry pros from the Teaching Artist Alliance. Teachers will also have access to a Late Night Teachers' Lounge on these evenings.

The Thespy Awards Showcase is the final event of ITF, with no late-night activities to follow. After all, you’ve got goodbyes to say and packing to do!

Teachers' Lounge

We've created a special hangout just for teachers! Stop by this adults-only area to relax, recharge, and reconnect. Located in the IMU’s Federal Room, the Teachers' Lounge features a charging unit, soft seating, and snacks provided by our sponsors. The lounge will be open on Monday from 1 – 5 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Tech Challenge

Tech Challenge will take place Friday, June 23 in the Marching Hundred Hall. A maximum of 25 teams of up to seven participants will be accepted to compete in four skill areas. Find more information. 

Thespian Shop 

The Thespian Shop will provide you with all the Thespian merch you need to show your Thespian pride! The shop will be open Wednesday – Friday from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The Thespian Shop does not accept cash. 


Students who opt to present their Thespy in person will do so Monday, June 19; all times will be assigned and communicated in advance via email.

Participants should arrive to their assigned room no later than 15 minutes ahead of their scheduled time and check in with the room monitor. All participants in each time block will be escorted in as one group and will remain inside the room until all participants have presented their piece.

Adjudicators will load their feedback into OpenWater, and troupe directors or Primary Contacts will be notified via email when their scores are ready to be viewed. For more information, visit the Thespys website or email

The 24 Hour Plays: ITF Edition

We are excited to bring the 24 Hour Plays to ITF! Students may apply in one of four disciplines – playwrights, directors, stage managers, and actors – to audition for six production teams. If selected, you'll be off and running to write, rehearse, and perform a new original work in just 24 short hours. Anything can happen!

Applications must be submitted by May 10. Students must be affiliated with an active troupe, but induction into ITS is not required for participation. View The 24 Hour Plays Guide for all the details on how you can participate.

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Health & Medical Needs

Please see ITF’s Health and Safety page for policies on vaccination, quarantine, masking, and other pandemic protocols.  If a participant should be in medical crisis, please call 911 and secure the person’s safety immediately. Once the person in crisis is safe, please contact the ITF Safety Hotline at 513.908.8177.

First Aid

The first aid station is located in the Hoosier Room of the Indiana Memorial Union (IMU) and will be open 24 hours beginning at 12 p.m. Sunday, June 18 until 8 a.m. Saturday, June 24.

Attendees in need of first aid should report to the ITF First Aid room, NOT the IU Student Health Center. They should bring a copy of their health insurance card. All students in need of first aid must be accompanied by an adult chaperone.


Students attending with their troupe (not chaperoned by a parent or other relative) should follow their school’s policies for carrying and administering medications. Chaperones and/or parents of students who normally take required medications outside of the school day should check with administration to ensure the necessary forms and protocols are in place prior to ITF.

For students who are attending ITF separately from a Thespian troupe, parents and/or adults acting as Primary Contacts are responsible for their own students’ medications.

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Safety & Security Rules

The safety of all ITF participants is a top priority — and essential to making the event an enjoyable, educational experience. Please take time to read these rules carefully before you arrive on campus.

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Primary Contact & Chaperone Responsibilities

Adult chaperones play a special role in making ITF a safe and fun experience for everyone. Troupe Directors, Primary Contacts', and Chaperones’ responsibilities include:

  • Handling check-in and check-out at the dorm/hotel and registration desk (please DO NOT bring students to the desk)
  • Keeping tabs on students’ whereabouts and activities throughout the day (remind them to take breaks to eat!)
  • Monitoring and correcting behavior, as needed; holding students accountable to ITF rules
  • Reinforcing safety protocols
  • Performing daily room checks after curfew

After curfew each night, chaperones must check — in person — to ensure students are in their rooms, and report to their floor captains. After room checks, floor captains must notify their safety captain that all students on their floor are in their residence hall rooms. Lights are expected to be out by 12 a.m.

Any chaperone or safety personnel may take the badge of any student violating safety and security rules. The adult who lifts the badge(s) should contact a safety chair to address the situation.

Unless otherwise instructed, a student whose badge is lifted will be required to meet with their Primary Contact or chaperone and safety personnel the next day at the 8 a.m. safety court meeting in the Charter Room at the Indiana Memorial Union.

For a complete outline of chaperone responsibilies, view the Chaperone Guide.

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