Many school drama clubs and theater troupes mark the end of a season or show with an event, such as a banquet or other form of drama awards ceremony. These events can be very emotional to the cast and crew, who have put their hearts and souls into the success of the performance.
Here we'll share a few tips to help make your drama club awards event meaningful, memorable — and free of all but the intended drama.
1. Hold Your Drama Awards Event On The Stage
If you have access to the stage where your performances were held, that may be the perfect place to hold an intimate celebration for your theater group.
Not only is it a convenient place to give out drama awards; it’s also familiar, comfortable and appropriately symbolic. After all, it’s the place you’ve shared so many set-building sessions and rehearsals leading up to that climactic last performance. Gathering there again can bring a sense of closure to the show’s participants while (literally) shining a spotlight on their contributions.
Set up some tables and seating on your now-empty stage to prepare it for this new purpose. If there’s room, you may even want to keep parts of the set and a few props set up as a backdrop for your event. Just remember to experiment with lighting levels before your drama club awards event to make sure the stage lights won’t make the space too hot.
2. Give Out Drama Awards For The Cast AND Crew
When some people think of drama awards, they think only of actors and actresses. Remember to recognize the hard work of all the individuals who put in countless hours behind the scenes.
You may not want to give out drama trophies or medals to every single participant, but make sure you’ve got a well-rounded set of drama club awards categories. For example, acknowledge the dedication of those who have volunteered as committee chairs or put in an exceptional number of thespian hours, even if they haven’t yet earned enough thespian points to receive their next star pin.
Following this tip can help prevent hurt feelings, jealousy and conflicts among the group.
3. Include A Podium
Arrange your tables and seating to face a podium, which creates a space for event hosts and drama awards presenters to address the group. A podium with a shelf on the speaker’s side can also be a handy place to stash drama medals and trophies before they’re given out.
You may also want to invite each award recipient to say a few words. Some theater troupes even make it a tradition for senior participants and/or all drama award recipients to read letters or speeches to express what the experience has meant to them. Which brings us to our next tip ...
4. Bring Plenty Of Tissues
Theater folks are a tight-knit group. You really bond with each other during those late nights and stressful rehearsals.
At the same time, the theater-loving crowd tends to be passionate and unafraid of our feelings. In fact, we thrive on them!
So after the curtain closes, and especially when speeches are given, there are tears. Tears of joy over the fun we’ve had. Tears of relief that the grueling hours and nervousness are in the past (until the next show). And tears of sadness that it’s over. In short, you’ll need those tissues.
Embrace the mush. Ride the waves of mixed emotions. And know that you’ll always have your drama club awards to remind you of the memories you’ve made.