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Munster Theatre Company (Munster Auditorium)

Work 8808 Columbia Ave Munster IN 46321 United StatesWork Phone: (219) 836-3200Website:
Photo of Munster Theatre Company (Munster Auditorium)

Biographical Info

The Munster Theatre Company (or MTC) is the producing organization for all theater productions based at Munster High School. Our main goal is to produce quality productions on par with the many fine regional theater groups in the area. We have received critical acclaim for our productions, with MTC audience sizes constantly growing. The theater program was reorganized during 2000 by combining the old drama club and all-school musical into a single producing organization, which puts a single face in marketing of our productions to the general public.

Theatre Company works with many other school organizations in the fine and performing arts fields. Theater represents one activity that brings together a wide variety of technical and artistic disciplines into a single venture. We apply this philosophy to bring as many different talents on each and every production. Our “sister” organization in Theater is theMunster Auditorium Staff, which makes up the other major part of the Theatre Arts at Munster. Participation is encouraged in both organizations and by taking drama and stagecraft classes offered during the school day.


We generally produce three to four productions during the school year, and in the future plan Summer Stock musical productions.

The season may vary from year to year depending on the talent pool of the members of Theatre Company.

NOVICE PRODUCTION – is open only to freshman and sophomores or upperclassmen who have not appeared on Stage before. Generally, this is training production to give our least experienced actors chance to improve their skills without having to compete with experienced upperclassmen for roles. The novice production is usually a student directed play, and is not done every season.

FALL PRODUCTION – is usually a major non-musical full-scale play or a contemporary lighter musical, needing only combo-Pit orchestra or piano, with inexpensive sets, costumes, and production costs. It is a full-scale production in every sense however. A fully staged musical revue may be produced in lieu of an actual musical, or even a play depending on available talent of the Company.

WINTER PRODUCTION – is generally a non-musical play, which may be open to qualified students as a directing project. Also, guest directors from the region may be asked to direct in order to broaden the horizons of students to differing directing methods.

SPRING PRODUCTION – is almost always a major musical production with a full orchestra, large sets and costumes. It is generally more traditional show like a Rogers and Hammerstein or Lerner & Loewe style of show. We especially try to involve as many students as possible on this production from throughout the school, and even open up chorus or other roles to Junior High School or younger students if the production permits.



The directors cast roles for the all productions at an open audition. Students are eligible if they are in good standing (no pledge violations) and have otherwise good school citizenship. The process is very competitive, but no roles are “pre-cast”. Other non-performance opportunities exist on every production and we encourage those, who do not get cast to participate in these areas. (see Artistic/Production Staff)


Because theater is much more than performing, Theatre Company includes many opportunities for work behind the scenes from the crew level through to crew executives and directors. We encourage all members of Theatre Company to gain a broad based background by working in as many fields as possible, so actors understand set work and “techies” understand performing.

Production Staff is selected by applications taken before the production, and of course no audition is required. Executives, Assistants, and crew are chosen for their experience and ability to complete their tasks. Our sister organization, Auditorium Staff supplies many of the people for our production staff, though holding a position there does not guarantee that same position on the production staff, which is chosen for each show.

DIRECTING – Students have opportunities to direct under the director on the major musicals, or become the Student Director of a complete project either on the Winter or Novice productions, and Junior High plays. Acting Experience is very important, plus a good understanding of the backstage elements. Usually experience may be gained starting as a Production Assistant, and then later as an Assistant Director, which gives a student an insight into the workings of the directing process. Choreography, which is dance directing, and student pit conductor also is included.

SCENIC – This field covers everything from design to artistic painting to construction, so a broad base of talent is needed. We work with a wide variety of set production styles, varying from the simple to complex. Strong artistic or carpentry background will be useful in the field.

STAGE – This field is moving actors, scenery, and props on and off stage during a production. It requires precise planning of each movement, and is gained mostly by hand-on experience. Many of the Scenic crew also works on stage during performances

LIGHTING – This field is responsible for creative lighting on the production. The Technical Director coordinates the lighting and sound set-up and operation through the crew executives. Usually it is the last element of the production to be finished. Good electrical and mechanical skills needed, and experience on set-up before operation of console or follow spots is required.

SOUND – This field is responsible for the various sound and sound effects on productions. Experience in wireless microphone and mixer board use and set-up are important, plus tape recording.

HOUSE – This includes ushering, house set-up/clean-up, concession stand operation, ticket sales at the door.

COSTUME/PROPERTIES – This area includes non-scenic pieces and costumes, which may be done by different crew executives.

MAKE-UP/HAIR – This area includes preparing for, and putting on make-up prior and during performances.

POSTER/FLYERS – Designing and distributing poster/flyers throughout the area for publicity.


Theatre Company tries to award students at each stage of their participation in Theatre Company, and recognize outstanding achievements as well as good basic participation over the time in Theatre Company.


The MTC Certificate is given to a student who at the end of the year has completed work on their first two MTC productions at the High School level.

Equus Award

The Varsity Letter recognizes significant contribution to Theatre Company that also includes induction into the Thespian  Honor Society and the requirements are:
1) Must serve two school years in Theatre Company High School at the High School level

2) Must work Five consecutive full-length productions at the High School level earning at least one thespian point per production OR Six Full-length productions; earning at least one point per production

3) MTC Summer Stock productions are counted toward the consecutive total, but not against a student’s production total if not involved in a Summer Stock show

4) Must be active for a year after any lapses in activity

5) any dropped role or assignment, according the MTC contract will count as zero points and prevent earning a Varsity Letter that season

6) New Seniors who are active ALL SEASON with exceptional effort and work may be considered for Varsity Letter without meeting normal requirements

7) Must have earned theatre Company Certificate

8) academic, conduct grades must be a “C” average, good school wide citizenship / no current pledge violations

9) Must have made a significant contribution to the theatre arts

Thespians will be initiated every year and will receive their certificate upon graduation

Honor Thespian – 60 points and outstanding service as outlined in Thespian awards guide

Best Thespian – The senior who has made the best contribution to the theater program chosen by the directors – (Best Thespian is also an Equus Award category)

These are given to students who have shown some outstanding achievement during the year, which may not be classified into a trophy category awards. Also, every Equus Trophy Award Nominee receives a certificate.

These are selected by the active Theatre Company members, who have earned their HTC Certificate, and worked at least one regular season show. They vote in various categories and the five students who receive the most votes become nominees, and the student with the most votes receive the trophy. The director, to make certain that the award process in fair, oversees this process.

The Equus trophy award categories are as follows:

BEST NEW ARTIST –  Actor and Actress stage debut in a major role

BEST BUSINESS / PRODUCTION ACHIEVEMENT – posters/programs/sign board, make-up/hair, properties

Equus Award

BEST PIT MUSICIAN – orchestra pit musician

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR – chorus, walk-on, specialty dancers

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – chorus, walk-on, specialty dancers

BEST SCENIC ACHIEVEMENT- set design, scenic artistry, carpenter, scenic Technical Direction

BEST ACTOR Drama/Comedy Role-principal non-singing role (even if role is in a musical)

BEST ACTRESS Drama/Comedy Role- principal non-singing role (even if role is in a musical)

BEST ACTOR Musical Role – principal singing role

BEST ACTRESS Musical Role– principal singing role

BEST DIRECTOR – student directors, conductors, choreographers, assistant student directors, conductors

BEST THESPIAN – best senior (selected by the directors) who represent the goals and ideals of  the International Thespian (Honor) Society

OUTSTANDING THEATRE COMPANY MEMBER – best senior who served MTC during their MTC career


Theatre Company has three officers whose prime purpose is to organize non-production activities including the Equus awards ceremony, parade cars, fund raising, represent Theatre Company interests in student government and serve as officers for International Thespian Society.

Elections are held at the beginning of each school year in September. Active Theatre Company members who participated in at least one production during the previous season are eligible to vote, except incoming freshmen. Elections are done by nomination for MTC officer in general; the three nominees who receive the most number of votes become President, First V-P, Second V-P respectively. If the nominee who receives most votes is not qualified for that office (IE a sophomore for President), then the nominee with the next highest number of votes will be President and First-VP.

PRESIDENT – Presides at Theatre Company business meetings, setting the agenda, and serving as one at the emcees at the Awards Ceremony. A senior is preferred who has officer experience; qualified juniors may be considered. Must be a Thespian member.

FIRST VICE-PRESIDENT – serves as presiding officer in absence of President, and works on specific projects assigned by sponsor or President. A senior or junior is preferred and must be a Thespian member.

SECOND VICE-PRESIDENT – serves as presiding officer in absence of President and First Vice-President, and works on specific projects assigned by sponsor or President. Any senior, junior, or sophomore (who has earned at least 10 Thespian points and should be inducted the following spring) may serve.

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