Actors and Writers: Be Part of NBYT’s Short Play Festival

SPF 2018

For two weeks this July, actors, writers and directors will come together for NBYT’s Short Play Festival.

The Short Play Festival will consist of several original short comedies and dramas submitted by NBYT participants and alumni and by local playwrights.

From Monday through Wednesday (July 9-11 and July 16-18), actors and directors will stage and rehearse readings of each short play from 6:00 to 9:00 PM. When possible, the playwrights themselves will also be involved in the rehearsal process. On Thursdays (July 12 and 18) at 7:30 PM, performances of those staged readings will be open to an audience.

Actors ages 10-20 are welcome to participate for one or both weeks of the Short Play Festival, but they must be able to commit to attending Monday through Thursday. There is no participation cost. Performances will also be free to attend, but donations will be accepted. To register as an actor, please click here.

Playwrights are also welcome to submit plays by June 30. Play submissions will be accepted from young writers (up to age 20), local writers, or past participants of NBYT only. (A list of guidelines can be found in a 2017 Short Play Festival posting here.) To submit a script, please deliver it to NBYT staff or email

Rehearsals and performances will be at NBYT’s Studio Theater Space at the New Britain-Berlin YMCA Program Center at 362 Main Street in Berlin.

The Laramie Project at NBYT

Laramie poster

The first production of the NBYT 2018-19 season will be The Laramie Project by Moisés Kaufman and the Members of Tectonic Theater Project.

The Laramie Project is the most serious drama that NBYT will produce to date. It’s the story of 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, the two young men who targeted, viciously beat, and left him to die in a field in Laramie, Wyoming in October 1998, and the community that became suddenly synonymous with this hate crime. But it’s not a story about Matthew Shepard being gay. It’s about whether we let fear, hatred, and anger define us as a community. And it’s a story that needs to be told now more than ever. Due to language and content, the ages for this production will be 16-20. Younger actors may join with their parents full understanding and permission; older actors may join with permission of the director.

Preparation for The Laramie Project will begin with a script reading on Wednesday, June 20  from 6 – 9 PM.  Actors who may want to audition or anyone who may want to work on the production is welcome to attend. Parents are encouraged to attend as well. Those attending can join in the reading or are welcome to just listen. Following the reading, questions may be asked about auditions and rehearsals.

Auditions will be held on Monday and Wednesday, July 30 and August 1, at 6 PM or on other dates by appointment. Anyone who cannot attend on July 30 or August 1 should schedule an audition earlier in July. Actors auditioning should prepare a dramatic monologue of approximately one minute from a modern play (1920 to present). Actors auditioning should also be prepared to discuss the subject matter and their interest in this project. A company of 8 to 12 actors will be cast who will play over sixty roles in the script.

Rehearsals will begin on August 29 and are planned for Mondays and Wednesdays from 6-9 PM. (Auditions are being held early so actors may begin learning their lines in August.) As part of the rehearsal process, a workshop will be held with a member of Tectonic Theater Project who will travel to NBYT from New York. Performances will be on October 19, 20 and 21. Due to the short rehearsal period, some additional rehearsal time may be necessary.

To register for the script reading, schedule an audition, or ask any questions about this production, please email or contact NBYT Executive and Artistic Director Darren Farrington.


Have you heard the news?!

No Boundaries stageHave you heard that New Britain Youth Theater is becoming No Boundaries Youth Theater?!

One of the most wonderful things about NBYT is how inclusive and far-reaching our company has been. Children and teens have come to our programs from nearly sixty towns throughout Connecticut and from all eight of the state’s counties. We’ve performed in New Britain, Berlin, and Hartford, and we’ve brought educational programs to schools in New Britain, Plainville, Bristol, Hartford, Middletown, Waterbury, and Torrington.

The name change will reflect that NBYT is—and always has been—a youth theater that serves much more than a single town. NBYT will continue to accept children from all communities, with all abilities, and to be involved in a variety of ways both onstage and off.

Conveniently, there’s no change needed in our website address (, no change in our email addresses, and there will be no change in the high-quality and affordable programs that we’ll keep striving to provide.

Watch for the name change over the next weeks. And stay with us to see what exciting adventures lie ahead as we journey where IMAGINATION KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES!


Willy Wonka Jr Auditions

Wonka logoSummer is almost here—and that means NBYT’s summer musical!

If you’re already registered for Willy Wonka Jr this summer, auditions will be on Monday and Wednesday, June 11 and 13. (Remember that everyone who registered will be in the show. Auditions are just to decide who’ll get which role. Young actors in the Little Players joining the cast for the last week do not need to audition at all.) Actors should plan to come on either day at either 6 or 7 pm. Come prepared with an upbeat musical theater song not from Willy Wonka and bring sheet music if possible; actors without a song prepared will still be asked to sing. Some actors considered for the role of Willy Wonka may be asked to sing Pure Imagination in addition to their audition song. Actors will also read from the script and should wear comfortable clothing and be prepared to learn a few dance steps.

If you’re not already registered for Willy Wonka Jr, it’s not too late to join us! Click on this link for details and registration information.

Roles to be cast are listed below (thanks to MTI, the show’s licencing agency). More details about the roles are on the MTI website too.

    Mysterious and mischievous but also charismatic. Funny and serious and able to change between the two on a dime. Willy Wonka may be played by a boy or girl.
    The emotional heart and soul of the musical. Think a male “Annie.” Charlie is in nearly every scene and has a demanding and sizable role.
    He is caring, funny, patient, sweet and always reminds Charlie to remain cheerful. The role sings a bit, but the singing is secondary.
    Both sing solos. Mr. Bucket performs Think Positive with Charlie and Mrs. Bucket sings Cheer Up, Charlie with Mr. Bucket and Grandpa Joe. Mr. and Mrs. Bucket will double as Oompa-Loompas in the second half of the show.
    The reporter who announces the winners of the Golden Ticket contest throughout the show. The role requires some singing, and will double as an Oompa-Loompa in the second half of the show.
    A judgmental Greek chorus of mysterious workers in the Wonka Chocolate Factory. Although they’ll look similar, each will have a different personality.
    An overachieving eater who represents the evils of eating too much. Augustus sings I Eat More! along with his mother and Phineous Trout.
    Augustus’ mother who has overindulged her son with food. She accompanies Augustus on the tour of the factory, and sings I Eat More!
    Gum chewer extraordinaire. Violet should stand in stark contrast to Veruca Salt. Veruca is a wealthy refined brat; Violet is more of a blue collar, middle class brat. She sings Chew It along with Willy Wonka.
    A teacher of geography who has invested a great deal of hard-earned money on therapy for her gum-chewing daughter, with less than stellar results.
    A wealthy, class-conscious, spoiled brat. She is often portrayed with a high British accent that is by no means required (brats come in all nationalities). Veruca’s solo number is I Want It Now.
  • MR. SALT
    His solution to most problems is to buy his way out. He is upper class, and sometimes portrayed with a high British accent.
    Addicted to TV, video games, the Internet, and any other mindnumbing technological device. Mike is bratty, loud, obnoxious, and does not know the word “no.” Mike and Ms. Teavee sing I See It All On TV.
    Ms. Teavee is a take on all television moms of the distant past. Think June Cleaver (Leave it to Beaver) or Marion Cunningham (Happy Days) or even Carol Brady (The Brady Bunch). She’s perfectly put together and a bit vacant. She sings I See It All On TV.
    Charlie’s three grandparents are mainly non-singing character roles but must have good comic timing. These actors will double as Oompa-Loompas in the second half of the show.
    James is Charlie’s friend from school. He has a few lines and sings the introduction of The Candy Man along with Matilda and Charlie.
    Matilda is also a schoolmate of Charlie’s, but she’s a bit of bully. Matilda has a few lines and sings the introduction of The Candy Man along with James and Charlie.
    These kids sing The Candy Man and will then play Oompa-Loompas.
    The squirrels are non-speaking, non-singing roles who will also play Candy Man Kids and Oompa-Loopmas.

Join NBYT in a World of Pure Imagination!

Wonka logoIt’s not too late to for children and teens ages 5 through 16 to be a part of NBYT’s 2018 summer musical, Willy Wonka Jr!

This musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s children’s novel, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, includes songs from the 1971 film and a score of new songs as it follows poor young Charlie Bucket and four insufferable brats on their visit to Willy Wonka’s mysterious chocolate factory! In addition to the lead roles, an ensemble will create the Chocolate Factory workers including the adorable, hysterical, and judgmental Oompa Loompas!

Registration for the full four-week program is open to children and teens, ages 7 to 16, from any town, and space is limited. Rehearsals will be held over a four-week half-day program on Mondays through Fridays from July 2 through July 27 (except July 4). Program hours are 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. All children who register will be cast in the show, but auditions will be scheduled in June to place actors in roles. (Children may also choose not to audition, and they’ll be cast in the ensemble.)

Over the course of the program, the cast will rehearse the performance—including music and choreography—and will also help to make some of the props and costumes to be used in the show. Rehearsals and performances will be held at Holmes Elementary School at 2150 Stanley Street in New Britain (off Hartford Road (Route71) near West Farms Mall)). Performances will be held on July 27, 28 and 29.

The cost per child is $450. A 25% deposit is due at registration with the balance due by June 1. (This fee is higher than participation in productions during the school year in order to bring together the staff to produce a musical in just four weeks and to pay that staff for availability during daytime hours.) Participation includes a show t-shirt for each actor and two complimentary tickets per family. There are no additional registration or costume fees, but actors may be asked to provide some basic costume pieces and their own shoes. Family volunteerism for production help and at final rehearsals and performances is welcome and encouraged, but not required.

Although the full program is limited to ages 7 through 16, NBYT offers an opportunity for a limited number of children ages 5 and 6 to join the program during the final week and be part of the cast. As with the full program, all children who register will perform in the show. Cost for this one-week program is $120.

To register for either the full four-week program or the one-week for younger performers, click on the “Golden Ticket” below!

Golden Ticket

We’re thrilled to have our summer musical featured in Camp Navigator magazine. Check out our four-page spread on pages 18-21!

For more program details and answers to other questions, email or call 860-515-8115.