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Boulder's Upstart Crow Theatre Company

Where Classical Theatre Lives

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Volunteering with The Upstart Crow

The best way to get involved is to attend one of our performances. If you like the show, tell a friend. Word of mouth is our best publicity.

We are actively seeking local theatre artists to work with us. Actors, designers, technicians, musicians, costumers, and other theatre personnel are encouraged to join The Upstart Crow and contribute your talents. If you've got business or publicity experience, we're looking for creative people to help publicize the shows, write grants, and get our name out.

We are an all volunteer company and cannot offer regular employment. Volunteers receive complimentary tickets to shows and a small stipend. Volunteering with The Upstart Crow also serves to satisfy Community Service obligations, such as are required of high schoolers or others.

Even if you've only ever dreamed of working in theatre, contact us. We can always use volunteer help cutting a pattern, painting a set, or taking tickets. We'll teach you what you need to know, and you'll get to work with a great group of people. Who knows? We might even get you out on stage. For more information, call us at (303) 442-1415.

Just fill in your information and check the boxes on areas that you'd be interested in volunteering for. Then click the "Send" button at the bottom. We look forward to hearing from you.

If you would like to receive notices of upcoming auditions for The Upstart Crow, please visit our audition list signup.

Your Name:

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Assistant Director
As the name implies, this is an assistant to the director. Just what that means has to be worked out with the director, but it generally involves input to the actors during rehearsals (notes) and working separately with 1-3 actors on a specific scene or specific needs. Assistant directors need to have acting and/or directing experience - the greater your experience the greater the opportunity you'll have. Not every show has an assistant director.

This is the path to directing with Upstart Crow. If you haven't worked with us before, we want to try you out as an AD before turning you loose on a show. Consider it an extended audition.

Stage Manager
The Stage Manager is the boss of the show once it opens. This means making sure the stage and the actors are ready when it's time to start, managing set changes and props, and dealing with any problems that come up during the show. This job requires some knowledge of what goes on backstage during a show.
House Management
House managers greet the audience when they arrive at the theater, sell/take tickets, answer questions, and sometimes serve as ushers. We always need at least two house managers and sometimes more when there are several events at The Dairy and the audience needs more help finding our theater. This is an essential job, but does not require experience nor a large time commitment. It's not necessary that you be available for every performance - any help you can give will be appreciated.
Every show needs a bookholder. As the actors are rehearsing and learning their lines, they sometimes forget a line and need prompting, especially early in the rehearsal process. The bookholder follows along in the script as the actors recite their lines and give them help as needed. The bookholder also keeps track of where an actor has learned a line incorrectly and shows them where to concentrate their line study. This is fairly easy and requires no experience, but is very important.

A bookholder normally starts coming to rehearsals in the second week and continues until about the fifth week. Rehearsals are Monday through Friday, 7:30 PM until about 10:00 PM. It's not necessary to have the same bookholder for all rehearsals, so any evenings you can come will help tremendously.

Lighting Technician
This is two separate jobs, although one person can do both. Someone has to sit in the light booth at the back of the theater and make changes to the stage lighting when the scene changes. With modern equipment this is pretty simple - just push a button on the light board at the correct time. Often there are also sound queues that require pushing a button on a CD player. Not hard, but you do have to pay attention.

The other job requires some training and experience. It involves positioning and focusing the lights so that the stage is lit in the right way at the right time. It may also ivolve programming the light board so that the operator only has to push the button at the right time.

Set Construction
The set crew turns the ideas of the set designer into reality. Every set is different, so every set has different needs. Some sets need people handy with tools, some need artists that can paint a forest scene or the interior of an English country house on a canvas wall. Most sets need both. The audience will never get a real close look at the set, so fine detail skill is not as important as it may be in other construction. Creativity and problem solving skills are useful here.

Set work happens Saturday and Sunday afternoons during the rehearsal period from one-ish to five-ish.

Actors wear costumes. (We're never going to perform Hair.) Upstart Crow is a classical theater company, so we rarely perform in modern clothing. Costumes may be as simple as a Roman toga or as complex as an eighteenth century ball gown. Sometimes we have an existing costume that can be modified for the current show, but often costumes are made from scratch.

There is usually a group of sewers working downstairs while set work is going on upstairs at the Upstart Crow Studio. If you have the skill to work on a project without the help of the costumer, you can take it home and work on it as it fits into your schedule.

Most shows have properties. Some have a few, some have a lot. We may need a quill pen, a cookoo clock, an ancient Greek helmet, a bust of Caesar, or who knows what. Since our budget for props is mostly wishful thinking, we need a scrounger. We need someone to look for odd items in odd places. Could that be you?
There's no point in performing a show if nobody knows about it. We need help getting the word out. Radio stations and other media need to be contacted. Press releases need to go out. Anything that will get people interested in seeing our show.
Grant Writing
We wish Boulder were like Broadway, where wealthy Angels underwrite shows and ticket sales pay for expenses, but it isn't. We depend on grants to provide a portion of the operating capital we need to continue producing our shows. This means identifying organizations that might be willing to give us a grant and going through their application process. Unfortunately, most of these applications come due while we are busy preparing for a show and we are unable to apply for all the grants we qualify for. Even just one more grant a year could make a big difference in the amount we have for a show budget.

Please describe your theater experience or other relevant experience. Also let us know when you would be available to help. Thanks!

Directions to The Upstart Crow Studio


© 1996-2015 by The Upstart Crow, Inc.
Updated August 9, 2015