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The Excellence in Technical Theater Contest

This contest is open to all high school students in Grades 9-12.

In Person Contest Day is Saturday, December 2, 2023, at Norwood High School in Norwood, MA.

Registration is open! Click here to register!

The deadline to register is November 12, 2023. You do not need to have your entry ready at this time, you just need to register!

Contest Specifics:

For students who register for IN-PERSON:

  • Students may enter ANY technical theater element—including set design, set dressing, props design, costume design, hair and makeup design, lighting design, sound design, projections design, directing, stage management, etc.
  • Entrants will choose a play or musical, create a plan for design in a specific area of technical theater, and present their vision to a panel of adjudicators using whatever digital medium works best for them.
  • Entrants may submit no more than two (2) different designs. Participants may present two designs from the SAME show or a single design from two different shows.
  • Entrants submitting two designs for evaluation must pay fees for both entries. Failure to pay for your entry will result in disqualification from the contest.
  • Entrants must submit a design from a published play or musical. The adjudicators will not evaluate designs from original texts. The presentation board should clearly identify the show/production, credit the playwright(s), authors, and/or lyricists, and if a design is based on a specific scene or moment, clearly identify the moment.
  • Entrants should consider utilizing other tools to enhance their presentation. For example, a sound designer may utilize a laptop and headphones, a stage manager may present a marked-up script with cues, a projection designer may want to present a series of images via a slideshow. We encourage creativity!
  • Designs should include specifics for each element of technical theater. For example, set designs should include a detailed set rendering of a scene or moment from the selected work. Costume Designers should create looks for at least 3-4 characters, but do not need to create a costume for every character within a play. Sound designers could create/present a sound plot and examples for a specific scene, an act, or the entirety of the script. Stage managers could present a cue call book for a scene, as well as plans/maps for scenery set/strike, prop placement, backstage travel, etc. Tri-fold boards are encouraged, but not required. The METG is open to you expressing your creativity in whatever way works best for you.
  • Designs must be approved by a teacher/administrator from the entrant’s school.
  • Entrants will each have 3 minutes to “sell” their vision to a panel of qualified judges, so be sure to practice your pitch!
  • If you register as part of a team - ALL members of the team must complete their own registration.

For students who register for VIRTUAL:

  • Students may enter ANY technical theater element—including set design, set dressing, props design, costume design, hair and makeup design, lighting design, sound design, projections design, directing, stage management, etc.
  • Entrants will choose a play or musical, create a plan for design in a specific area of technical theater, and present their vision to a panel of adjudicators using whatever digital medium works best for them.
  • Entrants may submit no more than two (2) different designs. Participants may present two designs from the SAME show or a single design from two different shows.
  • Entrants submitting two designs for evaluation must pay fees for both entries. Failure to pay for your entry will result in disqualification from the contest.
  • Entrants must submit a design from a published play or musical. The adjudicators will not evaluate designs from original texts. The presentation board should clearly identify the show/production, credit the playwright(s), authors, and/or lyricists, and if a design is based on a specific scene or moment, clearly identify the moment.
  • Entrants should consider utilizing other tools to enhance their presentation. For example, a sound designer may utilize a laptop and headphones, a stage manager may present a marked-up script with cues, a projection designer may want to present a series of images via a slideshow. We encourage creativity!
  • Designs should include specifics for each element of technical theater. For example, set designs should include a detailed set rendering of a scene or moment from the selected work. Costume Designers should create looks for at least 3-4 characters, but do not need to create a costume for every character within a play. Sound designers could create/present a sound plot and examples for a specific scene, an act, or the entirety of the script. Stage managers could present a cue call book for a scene, as well as plans/maps for scenery set/strike, prop placement, backstage travel, etc. Tri-fold boards are encouraged, but not required. The METG is open to you expressing your creativity in whatever way works best for you.
  • Designs must be approved by a teacher/administrator from the entrant’s school.
  • Entrants will each have 3 minutes to “sell” their vision to a panel of qualified judges, so be sure to practice your pitch! Your time begins after your slate.
  • Your slate should be presented as follows:
    • "My identification number in the High School Excellence in Technical Theater Contest is (give number). I am presenting (design element) from (title of play or musical)." DO NOT USE YOUR NAME IN YOUR SLATE.
  • If you register as part of a team - ALL members of the team must complete their own registration.

For students who register for IN-PERSON:

  • Once registration has closed, you will be contacted by the Contest Chair to be assigned a time slot.
  • Adjudicators will watch all in-person entries during their assigned time slot and score them on the appropriate rubric.
  • In-person space will be limited so sign up today! If we reach capacity for in-person, you will have the option to submit virtually. In the event that this occurs, you will be contacted by the METG.

For students who register for VIRTUAL:

  • Once registration has closed, you will be sent an ID Number and information with a link to instructions on how to record and upload their contest entry.
  • Contestants will record their monologues/scenes/technical presentations and submit them to our online platform.
  • Adjudicators will review all entries and score them on the appropriate rubric.

Additional Info:

  • Students may change their registration from in-person to virtual and vice versa up to the registration deadline. After the registration deadline, changes will not be accepted.
  • As always, the METG is committed to providing barrier-free access to student programming for all students regardless of their financial means. If the registration fee poses a hardship, please contact metg@metg.org to request a waiver.
  • Please note, this is the process for the Doug Ingalls Monologue Scholarship Contest, the Scene Partner Contest, the Excellence in Technical Theater Contest, and the HS Festival Logo Design Contest. This process may change for the contests later in the year.
  • METG High School Contests are open to current high school students within the state of Massachusetts.

Judging:

  • Submissions will be judged on the student's design and interpretation of the material. Presentations should be organized, precise, and cohesive.
  • Judges will be looking to see that the student has a clear understanding of the play and their chosen technical element and has used that element to support and enhance the production.
  • Students should be prepared to answer any questions from the judges about their presentation.

Prizes:

Prizes will be determined by the METG Board of Trustees.


DIRECTIONS TO NORWOOD HIGH SCHOOL: When you arrive, please park in the back of the school and enter by Door 14. That door is the closest to the Dining Hall where registration for each session will take place.

Norwood High School Paul M. Alberta Performing Arts Center:

Norwood High School 245 Nichols St. Norwood, MA 02062

From Rhode Island/Areas South (I-95): Take I-95 North to Exit 11B, merge onto Neponset St.

toward Norwood. In approximately 1.8 miles, at the traffic circle take the 2nd Exit onto Nahatan St. Drive approximately 1.2 miles. Turn left onto Nichols Street. Drive approximately 0.7 miles. Norwood High School will be on your right.

From Springfield/Areas West (Mass Pike I-90): Take I-90 East to Exit 14 onto I-95 South/128, toward the South Shore/Cape Cod. Drive approximately 10.6 miles to Exit 15B, merge onto Route 1 South. Drive approximately 2.7 miles and take the Norwood Center Exit. At the traffic circle, take the 1st Exit onto Nahatan St. Drive approximately 1.2 miles. Turn left onto Nichols Street. Drive approximately 0.7 miles. Norwood High School will be on your right.

From Boston: (I-93): Take I-93 South to Exit 1 onto I- 95 South towards Providence, RI. Drive approximately 3.2 miles to Exit 11B, merge onto Neponset St. In approximately 1.6 miles, at the traffic circle, take the 2nd Exit onto Nahatan St. Drive approximately 1.2 miles. Turn left onto Nichols Street. Drive approximately 0.7 miles. Norwood High School will be on your right.



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High School Excellence in Technical Theater Contest


This contest is open to students in grades 9-12. You may enter with ANY technical theater element. This includes, but is not limited to including set design, set dressing, props design, costume design, hair and makeup design, lighting design, sound design, projections design, directing, stage management, etc.

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