By: STO Ezekiel Payne, Belton High School, Troupe 3491
The STO's are so excited for the Leadership Academy! We decided that today we're going to explain the reasons why we're so excited to share this opportunity with you!
Leadership is a crucial foundation in almost everything we do as thespians. With leadership, we can build troupes up! We can help establish good leadership skills for everyone in the troupe, not just officers or directors. There are leadership skills that create an environment dedicated to success and growth. These skills mainly include how to make connections, smart use of social media, proper etiquette for outreach, and how to be a leader that inspires their peers, not one that derogates them. These skills and more can be learned through a variety of ways, but the most surefire and trusted way is through the Texas Thespians: Leadership Academy. Before we go more into this amazing opportunity, I’d like to explain why these attributes you can acquire there are valuable to you and your troupe.
The aforementioned skill dubbed "connections" is crucial to leadership in anything, thespian troupes notwithstanding. The ability to gain connections can allow a leader such as yourself to gain trusting relations on all levels. A good troupe leader can connect on a class/troupe, school, and community level. These connections allow an aura of respect and support to ebb and flow throughout all your troupe’s ventures. A thespian who is skillful in connections can be seen initiating conversations and being open to communication. Aspects such as those will help project your troupe to new heights discovering whole new avenues for connections.
Another increment of a good leader, especially for a thespian troupe, is one who understands smart and responsible use of social media. Social media, whether digital or physical, are not to be scoffed at. Almost every company, theater, celebrity, etc. we take seriously has some form of social media. So, if you want to increase your troupe's professionalism, organization, and publicity, this is a stellar way to do it. Good social media can range from bulletin boards to facebook to TikTok accounts. Proper use of these examples, and many more, can push a troupe from good to great. Social media informs the public as well as company members and, as we all know, communication is key.
Something else a great leader should always have under their belt is an understanding of outreach. You may be asking: what exactly do you mean by “outreach”. Well, curious Thespian, outreach is a variety of things. From reaching your communities to promote your shows to interacting with nearby non-profit work and volunteer opportunities. It can be work that garters recognition of the importance of theatre in our schools. It can be fundraisers that produce income to fund the department. Outreach comes in many forms, but nonetheless, is a crucial element of a theatre troupe and thus crucial for a good leader to comprehend and instill within their department.
The last thing all great leaders should put in their tool belt is knowing the proper way to lead people. Understanding the difference between bringing your peers up through your leadership or putting them down. A leader that understands this develops a positive relationship with their trust where things can get done, not because they are afraid of the leader, but simply because they respect and like the leader. This work environment is monumentally better than the toxic one born from looking down on your peers. There are many aspects of this learning; figuring out what are beneficial qualities to acquire and what are bad ones to be rid of.
These skills take time to learn and understand. Luckily, Texas Thespians is there for you and your troupe! We will be hosting leadership days on specific dates throughout the summer as part of our leadership academy, including today! (if you’re reading this the day it’s posted) These classes are going to teach troupes from around the state the skills listed in this blog and much more! This opportunity can grant you and your troupe the knowledge you need of how to extend beyond what you are now. To excel. We would love to see you there! You can find any more information you may need on this occasion right here on the Texas thespians website!
We can’t wait to see you there,
Your 2022 Texas State Thespian Officers