January 6, 2010
As the Department of Theatre and Dance seeks to maximize the potential of individuals and the Department as a whole, we place great importance on the production process and training rather than on the final product. We strive to avoid favoritism in order to maximize performance opportunities for our students. To that end, the following points serve as guidelines of casting at NSU:
1. Currently enrolled Northwestern State University and BPCC at NSU students are allowed to participate in Northwestern Theatre and Dance productions. However, there may be certain exceptions made in regards to guest artists, young children, etc. It is highly recommended that students wishing to participate in theatre and dance productions enroll in departmental courses for performance preparation.
2. The Department of Theatre and Dance holds auditions twice a year for all productions it casts. Fall semester auditions apply to spring productions, and spring auditions apply to the fall. The Department may reserve certain roles in fall productions that may be filled by incoming freshman/transfer students based upon the fall audition.
3. All performance concentrators enrolled in Applied Theatre must audition each semester for productions as appropriate to their respective concentrations. For example, when a large “dance” musical is not produced in the fall, dance concentrators are only required to audition for the spring dance concert (though they may audition for any production of interest).
4. Because NSU is a liberal arts institution, our primary attention is to a student’s overall education. Students therefore must have a 2.50 Cumulative GPA to participate in Northwestern Theatre and Dance productions. A student may participate in one Northwestern Theatre and Dance production at a time with a 2.50 – 3.49 cumulative GPA. A student with a 2.50-3.49 may be allowed to participate in more than one production at a time depending upon the size of assigned roles and/or demands. An example would be a student cast in a secondary role in a theatre production and two dance pieces within the dance concert. Production Directors and the Theatre/Dance Coordinator will make final determinations. Students with a 3.5 or higher cumulative GPA may participate in more than one Northwestern Theatre and Dance production at a time.
5. While GPA requirements for participation in the Dance Concert must be met, students may be cast in multiple works on the concert. Students performing in works created in dance or musical theatre courses are not held to the GPA requirement.
6. Casting for student productions such as Second Season and works created for events such as American College Dance Festival Association conferences will be held to the GPA casting requirement as these productions fall outside of curricular requirements. Student directors and choreographers may hold their own auditions for these productions, or they may observe auditions held by the faculty for departmental productions. Casting for directing projects, senior dance concerts, choreography or other coursework are not held to the GPA requirement as these are in direct fulfillment of curricular requirements. Northwestern “Main Stage Season” casting has precedence over the casting of “Second Season” productions. In certain instances, faculty may make certain allowances to this policy (with approval of the Program Coordinator).
7. Students may perform for faculty members’ theatre or dance companies off campus. While these are seen as professional opportunities where the GPA requirement does not apply, faculty members are asked to consider a student’s academic situation when casting for outside engagements.
8. NSU’s Department of Theatre and Dance casts performers on the basis of the quality of the audition given, the attitude and work ethic of the student, as well as the performer’s emotional and physical compatibility for the role. Casting for each production will be based on the results of the audition for that show, and will not be influenced by a student’s past auditions or performance in class(es).
9. Casting of Northwestern Theatre and Dance productions will be based on the abilities and needs of the students.
10. Northwestern Theatre and Dance strives to stage productions that allow for diverse and multi-cultural casting choices.
11. The program practices “blind” casting, unless dictated by the production, or where the Director’s “concept” mandates certain casting choices. Roles will be assigned regardless of gender, race, religion, national origin and sexual orientation.
12. The Production Director and the Program Coordinator make final casting decisions (within capability of the program).
13. Performers are “contracted” for productions by “initialing” their names on cast lists.
Production Directors agree to performer’s conflicts listed on “audition sheet” upon posting of cast lists. If the production director/choreographer has agreed to a prearranged conflict at the time of casting, the director may not revoke that agreement at a later date. Only in rare instances, will performers be allowed a “conflict” after casting. Students may be permitted to withdraw from a production in extreme situations upon approval of Production Director and Program Coordinator.