Formed on 29 February 1988, the MIT Gilbert & Sullivan Players is a volunteer group of students and non-students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA) that performs the works of Sir William S. Gilbert and/or Sir Arthur Sullivan. MITG&SP occasionally performs other works, usually with some connection to Gilbert and Sullivan or the Victorian era.
Note: We are not related to the MIT Gilbert & Sullivan Society that merged with TechShow in the 1970s to become the MIT Musical Theatre Guild.
For more information about our group, choose from the links below:
On this page:
- Can I join MITG&SP? Even if I'm not affiliated with MIT?
- Am I good enough to audition?
- What are the time committments like to be involved in a show?
- Who's in charge?
- How do we pick shows?
- Can I rent things from MIT G&SP?
- What do the production staff titles mean?
- What's our constitution?
- How about the bylaws?
- Do you know about Massachusetts hazing law?
- Want to see our producer's manual?
Can I join?
Yes! We're always looking for new members. We hold auditions for our main shows near the beginning of each term, and anyone is welcome to audition. We do have a policy of casting MIT students preferentially, but we always have plenty of enthusiastic community members and other locals in our casts, crews, and orchestras as well.
Just as important as the cast is our orchestra and production crew. We generally put out a call for these around the same time as auditions. Volunteering to help sew costumes, build sets, or hang lights is a great low-committment way to get involved with the group, learn something about how we do theater, and meet a wonderful group of people.
If you want to know more about what the various production staff titles mean, and what the people in those positions do, take a look at our explanation.
You can always find out what's coming up on the MITG&SP website. We also send out email announcing production staff and orchestra calls, auditions, and performances. To be added to our mailing lists, contact us and tell us what you're interested in!
Am I good enough to audition?
Probably. Can you mostly carry a tune? Are you willing to sing in public? If so, you're good enough to audition, and probably good enough to be offered at least a chorus role.
MITG&SP regularly casts people at all levels of skill, from mostly-can-carry-a-tune to serious music students. We very rarely turn away people for chorus on account of lack of skill. And we have a preferential casting policy for MIT students, so if you are one you needn't feel intimidated by the serious music students.
What are the time committments like to be involved in a show?
For actor/singers, rehearsal attendance is key. Rehearsals happen Monday to Thursday evenings from 7 to 10pm, and Saturday afternoons from 2 to 5pm, but we try to make sure nobody is called more than three times a week. Of course, the week or two before the show are more intense. We try to work around people's schedules, as long as we know them, and we understand that many of you are students with evening classes and exams and the like. We don't mind occasional missed rehearsals as long as you let us know in advance. We also welcome (and sometimes require, but not always) actors helping with set and costume construction, which is scheduled more around when people are available but often on Sundary afternoons.
For musicians, orchestra rehearsals are usually one weekend day for about the six weeks before a performance, and four to ten times with the cast depending on scheduling constraints and the music director's preferences.
For technical crew, committment is much more flexible, depending on your role. Set builds are Sunday afternoons and an occasional evening depending on the availability of crew. Costume builds and publicity work are scheduled on an as-needed basis. Put-in and production week (the week before opening night) are the busiest times, and we need all the help we can get for them. Even if you only show up for a few hours during put-in (we'll send email announcing it), we'll definitely appreciate it!
Who's in charge of MITG&SP?
The short and simple answer is, the Executive Committee. As of May 2014, the officers of the Executive Committee are:
- President: Tomohiro Soejima '17
- Treasurer: Brynna Downey '17
- Secretary: Rossana Chung C
- Publicity Officer: Mary Spanjers '18
- Member-at-Large: Nathaniel Koven
The Executive Committee members are elected by the membership at General Committee meetings, which occur late in the fall and spring terms each year. The member-at-large and secretary are elected in the fall, and the other three officers in the spring. Pretty much anyone who's been involved in a recent MITG&P production in any way can come to these meetings and vote - or you can look at the constitution for the exact details.
We also have the following officers who are appointed by the Executive Committee.
- Assistant Board Members: Barratt Park PhD '14
- Set-shop Manager: Rebecca Graber W '11
- Costume-shop Manager: Kelsey Peterson W '05
- Webmistress: Kelsey Peterson W '05
Who picks the shows?
The General Committee. According to our bylaws...
The group shall perform one Gilbert & Sullivan show each fall and spring term. The fall and spring shows for a given academic year will be decided by a GenComm vote at the spring GenComm meeting of the previous academic year.
The group may also perform shows during IAP and during the summer, which do not necessarily have to be Gilbert & Sullivan shows...
(Added to bylaws April 27, 2003) Additionally, the potential producer of an IAP or summer show must request a meeting with the ExecComm at least 2 weeks prior to GenComm. The ExecComm must grant all requests for such a meeting. The purpose of this meeting will be to give the ExecComm the opportunity to provide feedback on the proposed budget, help determine available performance dates and space, discuss performance rights, and give both the producer and the ExecComm a forum to address logistical issues before bringing the proposal to GenComm. After such a meeting, the proposal will be put on the agenda at the potential producer's request.
Can I rent things from MIT G&SP?
We have a variety of costumes, props, lighting equipment, and scores which may be availble for rent. If you are interested, please contact us.