The Ohio Community Theatre Association was formed in December 1953 with sixteen theatres. For over 60 years, OCTA has provided support to community theatres through workshops, the annual regional OCTAFests showcasing community theatre productions, and our three-day annual conference each Labor Day Weekend.
Today, OCTA serves over 100 member theatres in six Ohio state regions including member theatres in neighboring counties from across the Ohio River in Kentucky and West Virginia!
Ongoing activities include this website; a newsletter, CueLines, published five times a year; an annual Call to Conference; script lending library; guide/respondent/speakers bureau; the OCTA Manual; and a resource directory used to locate props, costumes, equipment needed to produce live theatre. We do this with an all-volunteer Board of Directors and one part-time paid staff position.
Our Mission Statement
The purpose of this statewide service organization shall be to promote excellence and creativity in live theatre by providing its members educational opportunities for growth in artistic and technical aspects of theatre, and to promote community awareness and understanding of, and access to, live theatre alone or in conjunction with other arts organizations, educational institutions and other theatre organizations.
The Ohio Community Theatre Association offers its member theatres resources such as: Guide/Respondent program, Script Library, Resource Directory, Workshops, Scholarships, Festivals, Awards, and Networking Opportunities.
Programs and Services
The Ohio Community Theatre Association is a statewide service organization whose main purpose is to serve the needs of its member theatres. Membership is open to any community theatre in the state of Ohio or in neighboring states within 50 miles of the Ohio state border.
Each member theatre has a delegate who acts as a liaison and generally meets with other theatre delegates within their region. Each of the eight (8) regions (Central, East, North, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, Southwest and West) in the state has one or more Regional Representative(s) who meet with the delegates in their region at least four (4) times a year. These Regional Representatives serve on the Board of Directors of the organization along with eighteen (18) members elected at large at the Annual Meeting held during the Annual Conference over Labor Day weekend.
The Board of Directors is divided into four areas with each chaired by an officer of the Board. The areas and some of the committees included are:
ADMINISTRATIVE: Nominations, Long Range Planning, Regional Rep Coordinator, Advocacy, Policies, Job Descriptions & History
PROGRAMMING: OCTAfest, Workshops, State Conference, State AACTfest, & OCTA Contests
MARKETING/MEMBERSHIP/PUBLIC RELATIONS: Newsletter, Publications, Resources, & Web site
FUNDRAISING: Patron Program, Grants, Scholarships, Sales/Logo Items, Silent Auction, & Raffle
AACT: OCTA partners with the American Association of Community Theatres as its biannual State Festival in the even-numbered years. Two theatres are selected from OCTA's Labor Day Conference to move forward to AACT's Region III Competition.
GUIDE/RESPONDENT program helps new and veteran directors with their production or in selecting an excerpt for a Regional OCTAfest.
OCTA STATE CONFERENCE: This is a three-day conference over Labor Day Weekend with workshops, excerpts and social activities. Theaters are invited to showcase excerpts from their recent season.
REGIONAL OCTAFESTS: Regional excerpt festivals are held in June and July. At these, theatres are selected to showcase at the State Conference.
OCTAFEST Jr. is a statewide excerpt festival for youth ages 18 and younger. Awards are presented. Two are chosen to showcase at the State Conference.
RESOURCE SERVICES: OCTA is continually updating its resource directory. If you or your theatre has something to rent or share, or if you are in need of a prop or costume, please contact us via this website or our Facebook account.
SPEAKERS BUREAU: Community theatre individuals that speak to other theatres or the public about the programs of OCTA
WORKSHOPS: Workshops are held in the regions as well as at State Conference and cover all phases of theatre.
LENDING LIBRARY: Over 2000 scripts are available for theatres to borrow for reading purposes to help in selection of their production seasons.
SURVEY: Every two or three years OCTA asks its member theatres for information about our services and programs to be sure that we are meeting the needs of Ohio's community theatre culture.
NEWSLETTER: CUELINES is published five times a year. CALL TO CONFERENCE is a special sixth issue published in early June to inform members and patrons about our annual Labor Day Conference. You may sign up to receive our publications via electronic mail.