Expanding your School Cast

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August 18, 2009
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Finding the right cast is difficult. Finding a large cast is even more difficult. Too often, there are not enough kids interested in audtioning for school shows. What to do? Her eare few suggestions to get the ball rolling... Part I: Spread the wordAdvertise, Advertise, Advertise. I know this is an obvious sugggestion but there are multiple resources, free resources, available that educators might not be taking advantage of (or aware of for that matter.) Ask teachers from all departments to make announcments in class or hang up posters. Hang posters in bathrooms, on the school bus, the cafateria, the school paper/morning announcmetns, or anyother unsual places students may not be expecting. This is a great way to introduce students to the marketing aspects of theatre. They can pass out flyers, lollipops, chocolate, buttons-all advertising for auditions and productions. Reach out to paretns through e-mails, letters, telephone, informing them of upcoming audtion dates and times. This is a way to get the community invloved as well. Put out announcments in local penny-savers or newspapers. ask local bussinesses if you can post auditon flyers or cards with information. Let's not forget Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and MTI Showspace!
2 answers

August 22, 2009
We cast an average of 100 students in our spring musical. Our difficulty is picking shows that will accommodate a cast that large, and give the ensemble members enough time on stage without compromising the integrity of the show. We feel we do a good job of it, but it does limit what shows we can do. This past year we produced a very successful production of Sweeney Todd : School Edition with 120 cast members! I would add, especially in the case of high school males, RECRUIT! Don't be afraid to go to the athletic department and recruit men if you don't have enough audition.

August 20, 2009
Another good idea is to always have your high school production the same time throughout the year. This is my first Fall Musical in high school when all of the others have been in the Spring. It's easier for students to commit when it's the same time each year.