Welcome to the Nitsch Theatre Arts family! This page is full of information that you will need for our Stage Kids and Rising Stars programs. Please use this page for your reference. Below is a LOT of information, and it can be overwhelming for new friends! If you have any questions about things mentioned in this packet, feel free to reach out and we will clear up any questions you have.

NITSCH  THEATRE  ARTS

- PARENT INFO PACKET -


GENERAL INFORMATION: 

  • We work very hard to be sure that all communication makes it to our students and their families. 
  • The MOST IMPORTANT thing to do is join the Facebook show group; "NTA Stage Kids Elf Jr". ​This is how we communicate with parents throughout the show process. 
  • General NTA information can be found at our website - www.nitschtheatrearts.org, or the Nitsch Theatre Arts NFP Facebook page. 
  • Rehearsal, tech week and show times are on the NTA website. 
  • We recommend checking the website regularly for any new information. 
  • Rising Stars should join the NTA’s Rising Stars Facebook page. Because we have Rising Stars students in all of our 6 locations, this is the best way to keep in touch with everyone.


CLASS CANCELLATION POLICY: 

  • If classes are canceled due to inclement weather, they will be posted on the Nitsch Theatre Arts, NFP Facebook page. 
  • NTA classes will be canceled if school is canceled in the district where classes take place. 
  • For example, if Eureka CUSD #140 cancels classes on a Monday, there will be no NTA classes that evening. 
  • If your student is going to be absent, picked up late, or in case of an emergency, please text NTA at 309-402-9457


REHEARSAL MUSIC:

  • Rehearsal music for both Stage Kids & Rising Stars is available to everyone using Dropbox. 
  • We will send out the link at the beginning of the session and new music will be added as it is learned.


 

STAGE KIDS: 

 
 STAGE KIDS AUDITIONS:

  • Every student who registers for our Stage Kids production is cast in the show! 
  • Please be on the lookout for the Audition Workshop. This is a session before regular classes start where students will receive all audition information. They will learn the music they will use to audition, as well as the dance portion of the audition. After this, students may submit their official audition video (using the information and steps provided at the Audition Workshop). While submitting a video is not required to be cast in the show, it is recommended.
  • Please note that students who do not choose to do the video audition will not be considered for parts with singing solos. The cast list is usually presented at the first rehearsal if it is not ready to be posted to the Facebook group. This can vary, however, and could take a couple of weeks. 
  • Students should always remember that every part of production is important. While it is normal for a student to feel upset if they did not get the role they had hoped for, please remind them to encourage others, and that everyone is important!


IN CLASS: 

  • Students should bring their script and a pencil to every class and are expected to make notes of their Blocking (where they go onstage) and Choreogrpahy (their dance numbers). 
  • Students should always wear closed-toed shoes, and there is no gum allowed. 
  • Please be aware that all of our class locations are graciously loaned for our use and it is important that students are respectful of our host’s property at all times. 


TIME COMMITMENT:

  • Classes are 45 minutes once a week for 12-14 weeks. Students will learn music, dance choreography, and scene blocking during class. 
  • After a song, dance or scene is taught in class, we need to move on. We do not have time to go back and reteach everything. Students are expected to practice on their own as needed to retain the material.
  • If your student misses a class, they should contact another student to find out what they missed. Please be aware that students who miss repeated rehearsals may be removed from scenes in the performance. 


CONFLICTS:

  • NTA is always willing to work around scheduling conflicts so your student can participate in Stage Kids. 
  • The exceptions are Spacing Rehearsals, Tech Rehearsals, and Performances which are mandatory for all students. We ask that you make us aware of all conflicts at the beginning of the session, or as soon as you are aware of them. 
  • Students with significant conflicts should understand that they may be given smaller roles.


TECH WEEK:

  • Tech rehearsals are MANDATORY. Any student missing a tech rehearsal may be removed from scenes during the performance. 
  • Tech week is a theatre term that refers to the week prior to the opening of a production. This is when set, audio, lighting, costumes, and props are added to the production. 
  • Prior to this week, students have learned their music, choreography, and blocking. At these rehearsals, they put it all together. Oftentimes, there are changes made due to tech issues - for instance, a set piece may be in the way of the blocking, so adjustments are made at the Tech Rehearsal. 
  • Exact Tech Rehearsal times may be listed as “TBD” when the session starts. Tech week will always be the week prior to the scheduled performance dates and your student may rehearse multiple weekday evenings leading up to the performances. We update the schedule with specific dates and times as soon as possible.


PERFORMANCE DATES: 

  • Performance dates and times and the number of performances vary depending on cast size, the time of year, and the availability of the performance space. 
  • Performance information is typically set prior to the beginning of the session. Sometimes it takes more time to confirm locations, or adjustments need to be made for class size. In that case, we will let everyone know as soon as possible.


COSTUMES: 

  • Theatre productions do require that your student have certain items - their “uniform” if you will.
  • All students need black or tan jazz shoes for performances depending on the character.  Jazz shoes can be purchased online at Discount Dance (www.discountdance.com) and cost $20-$35. 
  • GIRLS need tan tights and a tan leotard. These can also be found online at Discount Dance (www.discountdance.com). If your student would like to add black, grey, or nude-colored spandex shorts to feel more comfortable, that is also acceptable! 
  • BOYS should have a well-fitting undershirt and boxer shorts that can be worn comfortably under costumes. Please ensure these items are a neutral color; black, white, or grey.
  • During performances, students will have costume changes. Oftentimes, these take place backstage or in the costume area with other students. It is important that they are able to do these changes comfortably. 
  • ALL STUDENTS also need black socks that cover above the ankle. 
  • At times, costumes will consist of items that students may have themselves. In that case, we may ask your student to bring something for the show (i.e, blue jeans, black pants, white collared shirt, etc.). If this is the case, we will communicate this via the Facebook Group.
  • During productions, we ask each cast member to have a bin, clearly labeled with their name, to keep at the theatre during the run of the show. This can be a plastic bin or a simple cardboard box. This is where your student will keep their personal belongings during the show. This way, nothing gets lost!
  • NTA will usually provide the majority of the costumes for the productions. Please be aware that costumes are used by students in performances in 6 different casts. Therefore, costumes are not made specifically for any one student. We often have hundreds of costume pieces to be used by up to 100+ students and cannot check every costume. It is the student’s responsibility to let the directors know if their costume needs to be adjusted. 


TICKETS: 

  • Tickets are purchased through a ticketing website called Yapsody. All tickets will be $11, whether purchased online or at the door. 
  • Tickets will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis and you will pick your own seats. If you need to add tickets later, you may not be able to find seats with your group. 
  • The new system will not allow us to change our seating capacity, so order your tickets at your earliest convenience to guarantee seats. 
  • Once a performance is sold out, it is sold out. Once tickets are purchased, they are non-refundable. If you purchase tickets you do not need, tickets may be donated back NTA to be used by other patrons. 
  • We will have a few seats set aside for patrons in wheelchairs or who cannot navigate risers. Please be respectful of others and do not reserve a handicap seat unless it is needed.  If you require handicap seating, send an email to tickets@nitschtheatrearts.org letting us know how many handicap seats you need and we can save them for you before tickets are available to the public.
  • If you have any questions, please email us at tickets@nitschtheatrearts.org. 


TSHIRTS:

  • Show T-shirts are available for every NTA production from our vendor at www.jcscreenprinting.com under Exclusive Clientele/NTA-Nitsch Theatre Arts. 
  • Shirts will have the show logo on the front and show dates and the option of characters or names on the back. 


BIOS:

  • Each student is allowed a 100-word (or less) bio that will be posted in the lobby during their shows. Bios must be submitted through the link that is posted on the show's Facebook group by the set due date to be included. You will receive a confirmation when your bio is received. Once the due date has passed, our parent volunteer will no longer check the form. So please be sure to get your bio submitted in time. 
  • What is a Bio? A bio is a short description of your student written in the third person. EX: “Joey Simmons (Villager) - Joey is 8 years old and is so excited to be in this production of  Elf Jr! He loves playing with his dog, reading, and painting. He hopes you enjoy the show!”


SHOW DAYS:

  • Call times for show days are posted on our website. 
  • Typically, each cast will do a run-through of their show prior to their opening performance. 
  • Only cast members and NTA staff and volunteers and allowed in the dressing rooms on show days. This is for the safety of all of our students. Please be sure that your child has eaten prior to coming to the theatre for the show, as there is no food allowed backstage.


 


RISING STARS:

GROUP NUMBERS: 

  • Rising Stars from all locations learn group numbers that are performed together. It is important that students learn the numbers and rehearse on their own so they are a cohesive group at performances. 


SOLOS:

  • All Rising Stars have the opportunity to perform a solo if they wish!
  • If your student is interested in a solo, they are responsible for getting their requested song approved by the instructors, making it “show ready” and performing it for the group before they are put into a performance line-up. 
  • Upbeat songs are preferred. 


PERFORMANCES:

  • Rising Stars perform at various community events throughout the year. 
  • We will post dates and times of upcoming performances on the NTA’s Rising Stars Facebook page for students to let us know if they are available. 
  • Rising Stars are not required to attend every performance; only performances which they are available for! 
  • Students should expect to be flexible as the locations, sound systems, and the number of Rising Stars students are different for every performance. 
  • Students should also be aware that if they have a prepared solo, it does not guarantee that they will sing at every performance. 


ATTIRE:

  • Rising Stars must wear our group shirt (available at www.jcscreenprinting.com under Exclusive Clientele/NTA - Nitsch Theatre Arts), full-length dark blue jeans, black socks, and black jazz shoes. 


TRAVEL OPPORTUNITIES:

  • Our Rising Stars and NTA groups have special travel opportunities/performances.
  • These are opportunities and are not required but available. Upcoming travel experiences include Walt Disney World in October of 2022.