NJ Thespians is the state chapter of the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA), which sponsors the International Thespian Society (ITS), a theatre honor society. It is our mission to promote, strengthen, and advocate for theatre arts education in New Jersey’s schools.
EdTA is a national nonprofit organization with approximately 90,000 student and professional members. EdTA’s mission is shaping lives through theatre education by: honoring student achievement in theatre and enriching their theatre education experience; supporting teachers by providing professional development, networking opportunities, resources, and recognition; and influencing public opinion that theatre education is essential and builds life skills.
The International Thespian Society is the Educational Theatre Association’s student honorary organization. ITS recognizes the achievements of high school and middle school theatre students. Since 1929, EdTA has inducted more than 2.3 million Thespians into ITS. They currently offer more than 4,700 programs across 50 states and 13 countries.
NJ Thespians offers both a high school and middle school Thespian festival every year. Our high school festival boasts more than 1,000 students. At this event we host technical and performance awards, scholarships, workshops, college auditions, and more. Our middle school festival boasts more than 100 students. At this event we offer performance awards, workshops, and a school showcase. We have a student and an adult board for each of these festivals. We are currently working with Rodgers and Hammerstein on producing our first All State Musical Be More Chill.
We are so excited to be a part of the committees this year. Serving on the Steering Committee will be Jason Wylie who serves as our Student Thespian Officer (STO) Coordinator and our Alumni Coordinator. He will also be the Stage Manager for Be More Chill. Jason is currently a student at Rowan University who is focusing on getting his BA in Theatre with a concentration on Tech/ Design and Theatre Education. Jason costumes both main stage shows at Northern Burlington County Regional High School. He is also the co-coach for their Forensics Team. Serving on the Planning Committee will be Scott Cooney who serves as our Score Room Coordinator, Awards Coordinator, and our Webmaster. He will also be directing Be More Chill. Scott is the CTE Acting/ Theatre instructor at BCIT Medford’s Academy of Performing Arts. He created the curriculum based on collegiate acting programs and is responsible for training the students majoring in acting at the academy as well as directing the plays and musicals.
This year we are happy to offer the following Governor’s Awards:
- Musical Solo
- Musical Duet
- Musical Group
- Contrasting Monologues
- Best Overall Chapter Select Play
- Short Film