Annual Theatre Conference comes to the Armstrong Campus

Photo by: Heather Yeomans

Photo by: Heather Yeomans

By: Gabriel Williams, Staff Writer


Get ready to take the stage! The Georgia Theatre Conference (GTC) will take place on the Armstrong campus this Thursday through Saturday.

GTC is an annual statewide conference that has represented the thousands of students, professionals, and all those in the community with an interest in theater since 1964.

During the convention, high school and college students will get the chance to showcase their talent to professionals and audience members from all over.

This year will be the third time Armstrong has hosted the convention since 2010.

Here on campus, the Fine Arts Hall and Jenkins Hall will host two high school One Act Play festivals. The workshops, play readings, and auditions will be in the Student Union ballrooms. The community theatre festival will be at Jenkins on Saturday.

Not only will some of the action take place here, there will be other venues around Savannah designated to accommodate other events. Savannah Country Day School will host the middle school festival on their campus.

The Savannah Theatre located downtown will host the reading of this year’s winning play in the One Act Playwright Competition as a reception for visiting guest artists.

Additionally, auditions for the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) will take place Friday afternoon through Saturday.  For the auditions, college students are given 60 seconds to present a monologue (90 seconds for a monologue and a song) to a panel of three judges.

If the judges like their performance, finalists will advance to SETC, which will be from Feb. 27 – Mar. 3, 2019 in Knoxville, TN.

From there, major theatre companies will be in attendance to hire potential actors for their upcoming seasons and shows.

The theme for this year’s GTC is “One may smile, and smile, and be a villain,” which is a line from Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet.”

Associate professor of theatre, Dr. Peter Mellen thought the theme “makes you appreciate the bad guys.”

He went on to say, “without Claudius, Hamlet is just another over-privileged jerk. Without the two evil daughters and Edmund, King Lear is just an ornery, senile (and probably drunken) old fart.”

Participants will also get a chance to hear from special guests during the conference.  Actor Paul Marcarelli will join students for “Inside the Actor’s Studio,” a career discussion on Saturday afternoon in the Ogeechee Theatre at 1 p.m. Marcarelli is best known for his commercials with Verizon Wireless and Sprint.

David Harrell, international award-winning actor, speaker and disability advocate will be the keynote speaker.  

He has also starred on television series “Bull” and “Law and Order: SVU.” He has also been featured in film festivals across the world.  His award-winning solo play “A Little Potato and Hard to Peel” continues to entertain audiences all over the U.S. and internationally.

Workshops and seminars will be conducted to equip students with the knowledge of key elements and principles of theatre and tips on becoming a great actor.  These include Vocal Quick Fixes, Art of Expressive Singing, and Fundamentals of Stage Combat.

Mary Adams, freshman theatre major, said “I’m glad there are events like these to give possible theatre majors a chance to get their feet wet in the growing industry.”

For more information regarding rules and a complete schedule of events, visit

Be sure to stop by Jenkins Hall and Fine Arts for more upcoming events and ways to be involved on and off campus.