I play a musical instrument, but don't act on stage, can I still join?
Sure! We love having talented musicians in our pit band. Your rehearsal schedule may be a bit different, but we can almost always make it work! Playing in a pit band gives student instrumentalists the opportunity to learn new music, perfect their skills, and gain invaluable experience playing in an ensemble at local professional theatres.
My child is not sure if he/she wants to sign up. Is it possible to observe the first rehearsal/class?
Unfortunately we cannot allow students to observe a class or rehearsal without first enrolling. However, we are more than happy to arrange a meeting with the appropriate instructor beforehand to answer any questions you may have!
How are shows cast and are there auditions?
The goal of The Students’ Theatre is to provide students with opportunities where they can be both challenged to grow but also feel successful in what they're doing, gaining and developing self-confidence. We do not hold formal auditions for our student productions. Shows are cast from Production Company members based on interests they express, and the observation of staff during the first several meetings and workshops. Students are often involved in casting as well!
Who runs rehearsals?
Each student program at Highwood has an adult Program Manager. At various meetings and rehearsals, different Highwood Theatre staff members will be present, depending on what’s happening in the meeting. There are always at least two staff members present at each rehearsal. We also have a large group of college-age, or older, interns each year who join us at various meetings. The productions, however, are often directed by students!
Can I join both the Production Company and the Tech Crew?
Absolutely! Even though rehearsals overlap, we love to have students work on tech and act in the shows. This is especially helpful because actors have a special insight into the particular show and can often lend valuable ideas, comments, and thoughts.
Who teaches your classes?
All of our staff members at Highwood have specific areas of theatre in which they specialize. During the year, different teaching artists run classes that allow a group of students to concentrate and collaborate in one specific art discipline (i.e. dance, improv). These students learn, rehearse, and perform together. In addition, we often bring in other professional artists from the community to coach and do supplementary work with our classes.
What is your attendance policy?
Attendance at rehearsals, classes, and meetings is very important to a student’s success at Highwood. Students are allowed to submit pre-planned absences during a rehearsal process, and an absence due to a family emergency is perfectly fine. Ultimately, advance communication of a student's schedule by either the student or parent is the most important, as this allows maximum productivity for the ensemble in scheduled meeting times.
I want to do a production but I always have to miss one day each week?
In most cases, productions have set "potential rehearsal days". However, most productions at Highwood determine their final rehearsal schedule based on a Dates Survey completed by all participating families. That means that you can submit your conflicts and we'll do our best to schedule around them! In almost every case, we can work something out; please contact us to discuss your particular conflicts.
Can I join a musical production if I don't want to sing a solo?
It’s perfectly fine if you don't want to sing solo. We will never make anyone do something they don’t want to do. However, if the production is a musical, you will be singing at least in large groups. We will never force you to sing by yourself or force you to take a large role in a show if you'd rather not.
Do you ever provide food at rehearsals?
We occasionally have snacks during especially tiring rehearsals. However, if you think your child will need a snack, please pack one for them. We do not, however, have time in rehearsals for a full meal break (except during longer rehearsals right before a production). So, please make sure your child eats a full meal before rehearsal. We always have cold, filtered water available. But, it’s a good idea to bring your own, reusable water bottle so that we don’t waste lots of paper cups!
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The Highwood Theatre is supported in part by funding from the Montgomery County government and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the S. Kann Sons Company Foundation, the William and Karen Tell Foundation, the Robert N. Alfandre Foundation, Wenger Corporation, and West Wing Writers.
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