Individual EventsClick here to download the Florida State Junior Thespian Official Individual Event Rulebook.
“Individual Events” are performance and technical events that students from each troupe may enter into competition at their District Festival. Each troupe may create its own criteria for deciding which students will represent their school in Individual Events. Each District has its own formula for deciding how many Individual Events a troupe may bring to its local District Festival, and in how many Individual Events a student from that troupe may participate. This formula is based on the size of both the District and the limitations of the venue in which it hosts these events.
Qualifying Individual Events from each District are invited to perform at the annual FSJT State Festival. Florida State Junior Thespians currently allows each troupe to register up to eight superior-ranked Performance Events and up to four superior-ranked Technical Events. (In the event a troupe does not have enough superior-ranked events to fill this slate, exceptions can be made for up to four excellent-rated events to attend the FSJT State Festival.)
event categories are: Monologue, Duet Acting, Ensemble Acting, Solo
Musical, Duet Musical, Small Group Musical, Large Group Musical,
Pantomime, and Improvisation.
Technical event categories are: Set Design, Costume Design, Publicity Design, Scene Writing, and Makeup Design.
ADULT LANGUAGE: Students are not to use adult language in any performance at the District or State Level. The piece may be disqualified, and a letter may be sent to the school principal if this occurs. Please remember that this is an educational theater event aimed at students who are mostly 11-13 years old.
SLATE: A verbal “slate,” or introduction, is required for each performance piece and MUST include ONLY the entrant's name(s), title of selection, and troupe number. Do not give the name of school or other information. The official time for the event will start after the mention of the troupe number. (Example slate: "My name is John Doe. I will sing `Music of the Night’ from Phantom of the Opera. I represent Troupe #12345.”) The slate is not to be performed in character.
NO DOUBLE DIPPING: No student may enter the same Individual Event category twice in the same festival.
DRESS CODE: While performing an Individual Event, students are not allowed to wear clothing that displays their school's name, school's initials, or any identification of their troupe apart from their district and troupe number.
CAST OR SCRIPT CHANGES: No changes or additions to Individual Event titles or cast after the festival registration deadline. There may be financial penalties at both the District and State Festival for changed or dropped events. All Individual Events presented at State Festival must be the same title and cutting, with the same participants, that received an Excellent/Superior at District Festival. Any exceptions to this rule require a written request to Junior Thespian State Chair before festival registration.
APPROPRIATE MATERIAL: The troupe director is responsible for insuring that the material is appropriate for presentation in a public forum at their own middle school. The principal will be asked to certify that the material chosen meets the community standards of the school and community. Material deemed inappropriate by festival judges may be recommended for disqualification at the District and/or State Festivals. The District/State Chair will determine if the piece is disqualified. Their decision is final.
COSTUME CLARIFICATION: No costumes may be used. Costumes are defined as clothing which is unique to the character(s) in the specific play, scene, and/or musical number (EXAMPLE: 1950's style clothing for a scene from Grease.); or clothing that helps to establish information about the character(s) (i.e. mood, personality, period, etc.) in the specific play, scene and/or musical number (EXAMPLE: mismatched "nerd" clothing for The Nerd.) Dance clothing (leotards, tights, dance skirts, sweats, etc.) may be worn UNLESS they would be covered under the description listed above.
PROP CLARIFICATION: Props and accessories may be used if they are an integral part of the blocking and/or choreography. “Integral” is defined as a hand prop that is physically used by the actor to help tell the story. Set pieces may not be used with the exception of the furniture identified in the rules for each category.
STAGE WEAPONS: No stage weapons of any kind are allowed in Individual Events. Anything being used as a weapon must be mimed. (Please note that separate rules regarding stage weapons are in place for One Act and Mainstage Plays at our festivals.)
BEST PRACTICE IDEAS FOR INDIVIDUAL EVENTS:
Print out the rules for each Individual Event category, and have participants and their parent/guardian sign a copy of the rules. This will help them focus on what the rules actually say, and may also be a useful tool if someone claims not to have known a given rule and blames their troupe director for it.
Use the Individual Events as classroom assignments (or after school club activities), with the reward for exceptional work being a spot on your performance roster at the festivals.
Use the Individual Event adjudication forms as rubrics in your classroom. This will help students get more comfortable with the festival scoring, and provides an easy way to document student growth over time.
Organize a “mock festival” at your school before you attend the real District and State Festivals. Have students dress professionally, perform their pieces, share peer evaluation, bring in outside judges, and even give some fun awards. You could even do it in the evening as a fundraiser for your trip!
If you have more “best practice” ideas to share, send them to JamesFSJT@gmail.com!
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