April 19, 2011


Theatre Students Attend Southeastern Theatre Conference

Recently, six students and two NACC personnel, along with 4000 other theatre professionals, travelled to the 62nd annual Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) in Atlanta, Georgia. While this is the 6th year for NACC to travel to the convention (previous conventions have been in Orlando, Louisville, Chattanooga, and Birmingham), each year brings new and exciting workshops and audition opportunities for our students.

This year a new service was offered to college transfer students. Normally students are only allowed to audition if they are passed on to the professional auditions from the state level. The state level is for ALL college students in Alabama, including college seniors with 4 years of acting experience. Two of the six NACC students, Rebecca Harper and Laura Spears, were passed to professional auditions, and they both received callbacks for summer work in theatre. In addition to these professional auditions, all six of the attending students were able to audition as undergraduates against other 2-year college students as well as high school juniors and seniors for scholarships and admittance to theatre programs all over the nation.

This was a huge opportunity for the NACC students as they were able to compete with students that were in the same age range and on similar levels of acting experience. The six NACC students received a total of over 80 requests for interviews from the 75 schools recruiting at the convention. Several of them were scheduled to transfer from NACC this fall, and now schools that were previously not an option have become a serious consideration. All students were offered scholarships, and they ranged from $1500 to $15000. A few of the 75 schools interested in NACC students include Brevard University, Lee University, Gainsville Theatre Alliance, Savannah College of Art & Design, Valdosta State University, University of West Florida, New York Conservatory for the Arts, Theatre of Arts Hollywood, Seton Hill, Long Island University, and Bradley University.

“Each year at the convention we recognize the reality and enormity of show business, and our students glean priceless knowledge about making choices that will affect their careers for years to come,” said Regan McClung, Theatre Office Manager at NACC. For example, this year students attended a keynote presentation by Matt Cavenaugh, who played Tony in the 2009 Broadway revival of West Side Story. Cavenaugh began where our students are starting- SETC. In addition to the over 300 workshop presentations by theatre professionals and highly acclaimed speakers, there are five play festivals, ranging from high school productions to community productions, each with approximately 10 plays. There is also job contact service for jobs in technical theatre as well as companies displaying commercial exhibits with everything from lighting equipment to theatre t-shirts.

“At NACC theatre we train students to embrace their passions, and we help them to achieve their goals,” continued McClung. “Conferences such as SETC provide our students the opportunity, training, and experience to become effective communicators, which helps them find success no matter where their career path leads them. The wide array of professional opportunities offered at NACC give students the training to face tough auditions for scholarships, roles, or job interviews. The students and faculty who attended these events would like to thank several people for their contributions to this trip: NACC President Dr. David Campbell, the faculty and staff of Northeast Alabama Community College, and the NACC Theatre Guild, founded by Susan Metcalf. Without funding and support from both of these sources, this trip would not have been a reality.”

For more information about the NACC Theatre, go to and click on “Theatre” or call NACC ext. 218. Email McClung at

Attending the Southeastern Theatre Conference from NACC were (L-R) Cody Brown of Sylvania, Rebecca Harper of Fort Payne, Ryan Dobbs of Dade County, Garan Tinsley of Collinsville, Brenna Clark of Crossville, and Laura Spears of Sylvania.