For more than half a century, Webster University’s Conservatory community has trained students for professional theatre. Our performance and production opportunities remain unmatched, so our audition and portfolio process is a vigorous one. To learn more, explore the resources below.

Schedule an Audition

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Conservatory Season

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Given the current global health crisis, the 2020-2021 season promises to be a challenge that we’re eager to embrace (safely) together. Our venues, dates, and ways of reaching audiences will adapt to changing conditions.

Fall 2020

Canfield Drive – Written and gathered by Kristen Adele Calhoun and Michael Thomas Walker
The Living – By Anthony Clarvoe
Deadly – Book and lyrics by Vanessa Claire Stewart, music by Ryan Thomas Johnson

Schedule an Audition

Step 1: Performance program applicants are required to submit pre-screen materials through Acceptd. All auditions will be virtual for the 2020-2021 academic year. Performance program auditions can only be scheduled on the designated dates. Individual appointments are not available. The faculty will review all submissions weekly. Once reviewed, students will be notified if they are invited to request an audition date with Webster University. We will open the application in Acceptd on October 1, 2020 and the submission deadline for Acceptd is January 30, 2021. Please email Patti Baygents if you need to submit pre-screen materials after this date.

Step 2: Once you have received an invitation to audition, then you apply to Webster University through Common App. 

Step 3: After completing your application, you will receive an email with a link to submit an Audition Request Form and a $30 fee in order to select an audition date. You will be contacted by Patti Baygents, Audition Coordinator for the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts, to schedule a time for your audition.

Note: Questions regarding auditions and portfolio reviews should be directed to Patti Baygents at the Office of Admission at (314) 246-4216. Students must apply and be academically accepted to Webster University before audition results for the Conservatory are released.

Step 1: Production program applicants should apply to Webster University through Common AppStudents seeking a portfolio review and/or interview for Costume Construction, Costume Design, Lighting Design, Scene Design, Scene Painting, Sound Design, Stage Management, Technical Direction, or Wig and Makeup Design are not required to upload to Acceptd.However, if students do submit through Acceptd, their materials will be reviewed by faculty.

Step 2: After completing your application, you will receive an email with a link to submit your Audition Request Form and $30 fee. You will be contacted by Patti Baygents, Audition Coordinator for the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts, to schedule a date and time for your review or interview.

Note: Questions regarding auditions and portfolio reviews should be directed to Patti Baygents at the Office of Admission at (314) 246-4216. Students must apply and be academically accepted to Webster University before audition results for the Conservatory are released.

Webster Groves Audition Dates New York: Unified Audition Tour Chicago: Unified Audition Tour Los Angeles: Unified Audition Tour
Saturday, January 30 Saturday, January 23, 2021 Sunday, February 7, 2021 Saturday, February 13, 2021
Saturday, February 6 Sunday, January 24, 2021 Monday, February 8, 2021 Sunday, February 14, 2021
Saturday, February 20 Monday, January 25, 2021 Tuesday, February 10, 2021  
Saturday, February 27   Wednesday, February 10, 2021  
    Thursday, February 11, 2021  

 

Prescreen Requirements

Acting candidates will need to submit monologues to Acceptd.

  • As a prospective acting major, you must prepare two monologues of not more than three minutes total. The selections should be of a contrasting nature. Choose characters close to yourself in age from scripts written after 1930. Monologues must be memorized and fully prepared.
  • Do not plan a long and involved introduction to your scene. Simply announce the name of the play and character and begin. Do not select Shakespeare or classical pieces. Do not do extreme characterizations of body, voice, or speech to alter your own age, physical abilities, or mental health. The characters should be as natural, authentic, and close to you in real life as you can imagine. Do not use a dialect or accent. Use your own speech, even if the character would normally speak with an accent.

Directing candidates will need to submit monologues and portfolio to Acceptd

  • As a prospective directing major, you must prepare two contemporary monologues. These should be realism and should not exceed three (3) minutes combined. They will be performed for a Webster faculty member.
  • For your portfolio, any theatre experiences should be represented. If you have directed a play or scene or assisted on a project, bring materials from that work (pictures, video, promptbook, program, etc). We also understand that students interested in the directing program might have little or no formal directing experience. For that reason, the portfolio might also include work in other arts such as acting, design, choreography, opera, singing, photography, video, film, painting, design, or writing. Share your artistic interests.

Musical Theatre candidates will need to submit songs and a monologue through Acceptd.

For Songs

  • One song should be written prior to 1970. This song can be either the uptempo or the ballad (student's choice).
  • One song should be written after 1970 and contrast the style of the first.

For Monologues

  • One 60 – 90-second contemporary monologue (written during the 20th Century-present) from a published play. This time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds.
  • Contemporary monologue should be filmed in a "close-up" shot which means only the top of the head to the chest should be visible in the frame.

Wild Card (optional)

  • Submissions should be no more than 60 seconds.
  • This media can be ANYTHING you want: a special skill, an interesting story about yourself, a passion speech, an instrument that you play, etc. "What do you want us to know about you?" and "What makes you unique?".

Once you have submitted your pre-screen materials, please wait for further information before submitting your application to the University.

Preparing for an Audition/Interview

Monologues
Prepare two monologues of not more than three (3) minutes total. The selections should be of a contrasting nature. Choose characters close to yourself in age from scripts written after 1930. Monologues must be memorized and fully prepared.

  • Do not plan a long and involved introduction to your scene. Simply announce the name of the play and character and begin.
  • Do not select Shakespeare or classical pieces.
  • Do not do extreme characterizations of body, voice, or speech (extreme age, illness, insanity, handicap, etc.). The characters should be as natural, authentic, and close to you in real life as you can imagine.
  • Do not use a dialect or accent. Use your own speech, even if the character would normally speak with an accent.

Props and Costumes
The fewer the props and costumes the better. We will provide you with a chair if you need it, and you should keep the number of props and costume pieces down to one or two at the most.

Clothing
Please dress in clothing comfortable enough to allow you to do your best work, while still maintaining a professional look. No gym clothes, nothing too tight or revealing, and no heels above 3" tall.

Monologues and Songs
Prepare two monologues of not more than three (3) minutes total. The selections should be of a contrasting nature. Choose characters close to yourself in age from scripts written after 1930. Monologues must be memorized and fully prepared.

  • Do not plan a long and involved introduction to your scene. Simply announce the name of the play and character and begin.
  • Do not select Shakespeare or classical pieces.
  • Do not do extreme characterizations of body, voice, or speech (extreme age, illness, insanity, handicap, etc.). The characters should be as natural, authentic, and close to you in real life as you can imagine.
  • Do not use a dialect or accent. Use your own speech, even if the character would normally speak with an accent.

In addition, you must present two songs of contrasting nature of not more than 32 measures each to provide substantial information on vocal quality and range. One of the songs must be taken from the "Golden Era" genre that spans from 1943 to 1964.

Props and Costumes
The fewer the props and costumes the better. We will provide you with a chair if you need it, and you should keep the number of props and costume pieces down to one or two at the most.

Clothing
Please dress in clothing comfortable enough to allow you to do your best work, while still maintaining a professional look. No gym clothes, nothing too tight or revealing, and no heels above 3" tall.

Singing
Please have recorded piano accompaniment prepared for your Zoom audition with an external playing device.

Dance
Upon request ONLY, students may be requested to send a video of ballet, jazz and/or contemporary dance that is no longer than 1 minute in length. An additional 1-minute dance video hip-hop and/or tap is optional. 

Monologues
Prepare two contemporary monologues. These should be realism and should not exceed three (3) minutes combined. They will be performed for a Webster faculty member.

Portfolio
Any theatre experiences should be represented. If you have directed a play or scene or assisted on a project, bring materials from that work (pictures, video, promptbook, program, etc). We also understand that students interested in the directing program might have little or no formal directing experience. For that reason, the portfolio might also include work in other arts such as acting, design, choreography, opera, singing, photography, video, film, painting, design or writing. Share your artistic interests.

Write an Essay
This is separate from the essay you wrote for admission to Webster University. Write a 750-1000-word essay on ONE of the following topics. This should be a separate essay from the one required by the University. The following are suggestions for this essay:

  • Tell a compelling story from your life (or someone you know) and describe how you would bring it to the stage.
  • What surprises/inspires you most about your experiences with live performance and give an example of how you might create such a moment yourself?
  • Describe how you would go about sharing your passion for the theatre with children and give an example of a project you could direct to demonstrate that passion.

Portfolio
Applicants in any of the design or technical production areas must present a portfolio that showcases the variety and caliber of your work in the arts or theatre. Interviews are typically held on Friday mornings. Such a portfolio might include pieces from the following:

  • Drawings, any subject and media
  • Examples of work in color
  • Drafting
  • Prints
  • 3-D projects of any type
  • Actual theatrical design work, either for a production or a project
  • Photographs of projects
  • Evidence of work in carpentry, electronics, mechanics, scenic construction
  • Sound

Letters of recommendation from two persons familiar with your work should be included.

Portfolio
Applicant interviews for stage management are typically held on Thursday afternoons. Such a portfolio might include the following:

  • A production book
  • Any information that demonstrates the student's achievements and abilities

Letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with your work should be included.

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