International Thespian Society

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International Thespian Society
Abbreviation ITS
Motto "Act well your part; there all the honor lies."
Formation 1929
Type NGO
Purpose Dramatical Arts
  • International
Official language American English

The International Thespian Society is an honorary organization for high-school and middle-school theatre students located at more than 3,600 affiliated secondary schools across the United States, Canada, and abroad.[1]


The International Thespian Society was founded in Fairmont, West Virginia.[2]

Mission and Vision[edit]

The mission of ITS is to honor student excellence in the theater arts; its motto is, "Act well your part; there all the honor lies." by Alexander Pope. It is a division of the Educational Theatre Association.[3]

Relationship with Students[edit]

The ITS inducts high school students active in theater each fall or spring, with members earning points towards a higher rank.[4]


The International Thespian Officers (ITO) are student leaders, elected annually at the Leadership Conference, a training event for leaders at the troupe, state, and international level held at the International Thespian Festival. There are six ITO offices: a Chair/International Liaison, an officer from each of the four Thespian regions of the USA, and a Webmaster-Secretary.[5] In some schools there are 8 officers, President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Web Master, Historian, Tech Representative and Publicity.[6][7]


The International Thespian Officers is a group of student members of the International Thespian Society who are elected by their peers to serve as the voice of the student membership of the organization. They bring the needs of Thespians and suggestions for policy and service changes to the attention of the Educational Theatre Association Board, serve as an integral part of the leadership training program, and represent the Society and take an active role at student-oriented functions such as chapter conferences and the annual International Thespian Festival. The International Thespian Officers remain connected with Thespians from across the country through their website.

Festivals and Events[edit]

Festivals are held annually, at the district, state and national levels. The season culminates with the International Thespian Festival, held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln each June.[8] At "Festival", the "Chapter Select Showcase" showcases troupes qualifying from their respective State Thespian Festivals who have previously qualified from their respective District Thespian Festivals.[9] Main Stage is where adjucators watch shows from the various middle and high school groups in front of an audience of about 3,000, in the Lied Center for Performing Arts. There are auditions for national cast productions, as well as individual events.[10] The Individual Events offered at the Thespian Festival are monologue, duet acting, ensemble acting, solo musical, duet musical, group musical, pantomime, lighting design, scenic design, publicity design, costume design, costume construction, stage management, and short film. Workshops and performances fill the daily schedules of Thespians, while dances and themed chaperone dinners occupy the evenings. Additionally, High School Juniors are given the opportunity to audition for dozens of colleges and universities, and Seniors are given college scholarship opportunities. At the high school level, students can reach Life member status, and receive a bronzed membership card and Pass, for free admission to all high school productions for life.[11]

Junior International Thespian Society[edit]

There is also a Jr. International Thespian Society (or Jr. ITS) for Middle School in grades 6-8.

  • 2009 - Tupelo, Mississippi
  • 2010 - Gainesville, Florida
  • 2011 - Bexley, Ohio
  • 2012 - Denver, Colorado
  • 2013 - Augusta, Georgia
  • 2014 - Dallas, Texas

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "International Thespian Society - Cedarburg School District". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  2. ^ "Aliso Niguel Theatre Company - INTERNATIONAL THESPIAN SOCIETY". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  3. ^ "Thespian Awards « Cypress Ranch Theatre | The Backstage Pass". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  4. ^ "Volunteer Spotlight: Thespians". Broadway Cares. 2013-11-14. Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  5. ^ "Cache County School District". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  6. ^ "May/June 2013 | Mercy High School". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  7. ^ "Evergreen Valley High School: News Archive". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  8. ^ "Brent International School Manila | Recent Events". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  9. ^ "Professional Prompt Book for Audition". Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  10. ^ Just a High School Play - E. Eugene Perry - Google Books. Retrieved 2014-08-24. 
  11. ^ "Honor Organizations Chartered forNCS Drama Students - Nashville Christian School". 2013-09-06. Retrieved 2014-08-24.