Events and Festivals

SETC offers an array of national caliber events and festivals for theatre professionals and students of every theatre discipline. You can find information on our events by clicking any menu item to the left. Or read more below!

Annual SETC Convention

Our signature annual convention, held every year since 1950, features more than 5,000 attendees, 300+ workshops, an Education Expo with 90+ schools represented, 40+ Commercial Exhibitors, a Theatre Job Fair geared towards off-stage work, and much, much more. This is where it all comes together to create an exciting, dynamic event that truly has a life of its own.

Upcoming Convention Dates and Locations:
74th Annual SETC Convention | Lexington, KY | Mar. 1 – 5, 2022


Fall, Spring, Professional, Grad, Undergrad — SETC has auditions for everyone. Dozens of venerated theatre companies from across the country gather twice a year to review top talent at SETC’s fall and spring professional auditions. The atmosphere is electric as outstanding singers, dancers and actors gather to give it their all to land a coveted role in theatre. In Spring, institutions of higher education audition and interview potential students for their programs. In Fall, we partner with USITT to produce LiNK, an event focusing on graduate-level recruiting.

Board Meetings

Talent, dedication and commitment are all words that describe SETC’s Board of Directors. From ExCom to Advisory, our Board carves out a dynamic future for the nation’s top theatre organization, while honoring our history and working tirelessly (and often without members’ knowledge) behind the scenes to make it all happen. Learn more about SETC Leadership.

Design Competition

Each year, graduate and undergraduate students display their design work at the annual SETC Convention, get critiqued, meet professional designers, network, and compete to win cash and experience awards! Winners of the competition receive cash, product or experience awards (depending on the competition), a certificate of achievement, and recognition in SETC News.


We offer five theatre performance festivals, where the best and the brightest talent in the nation showcase their work!

National Conference on Outdoor Theatre

The Institute of Outdoor Theatre (part of SETC since 2017) hosts a multi-day conference each year that brings practitioners and advocates of outdoor theatre together to discuss key issues affecting outdoor dramas. Focused on serving those working in all forms of outdoor theatre — from Shakespeare festivals and musical theatre to religious and historical plays — this is an opportunity for theatre leaders to share their experiences and take away new ideas.

Most Recent Conference:
2021 National Conference on Outdoor Theatre | A Virtual Event | Sept. 30 – Oct. 1, 2021

Teachers Institute

Held in conjunction with the annual SETC Convention, this all-day seminar is designed for directors of theatre arts programs, teaching artists, middle and high school teachers who use theatre techniques in the classroom, and students studying to be theatre educators. Continuing education units and/or professional development documentation is available for participants.

Theatre Symposium

This weekend conference is held on a southeastern university campus each spring and focuses on a single scholarly topic. International attendees gather to present papers and to discuss and explore the topic as a group, thus creating an intimate opportunity for the sharing of ideas, concepts and opinions. Selected papers presented at the conference are published in Theatre Symposium, a scholarly journal published annually by Alabama Press and available on EBSCO.


We are 110% committed to our constituents, inclusion, and the craft of theatre.