On Stage

Although our performances are classified as non-professional, some present members are former professional actors and a number of past members have gone on to later appear in professional productions. Don’t let that scare you though because as a community theater, we have a variety of different levels of experience and talent at SMCT. If you’ve ever wanted to be in a show, come to one of our auditions and try it out.


Auditions at the Santa Maria Civic Theatre are different from a normal theater audition. While the exact process is up to the director, typically actors wanting to audition will come to the theater at a specific time and will be asked to read selections from the script with other auditioners. These auditions usually last one or two hours and it allows the director to see how different actors will look and sound with each other. Some directors will also schedule call-backs for specific actors before deciding on the cast.


Rehearsals are typically three times a week but are up to the discretion of the director. You are expected to come on time and ready to rehearse to every rehearsal the director requests. Most directors are happy to work around their actors schedules and rehearsals are usually held in the evenings or on the weekend.

Tech Week & Dress Rehearsal

The week before a performance opens is called tech week. During this week actors are expected to rehearse each night to be ready for the Thursday dress rehearsal. These rehearsals may be longer than normal and may require frequent pauses and stops as the director and the technical manager iron out lighting and sound cues. This is also the time that the stage manager will smooth out any issues with props or scene changes.

The Thursday before opening is the show dress rehearsal. This performance is open to members of our friends of the theatre and is a last chance for the director and the stage manager to give the actors notes and to find any technical glitches. It’s also often the first chance for the actors to perform for a real audience to gauge reactions to their performances.


Feature productions at the Santa Maria Civic Theatre play for three weeks with shows on Friday, Saturday and a Sunday matinee. Reader’s Theatre productions typically run for only a single weekend. Actors are expected to arrive one hour before show time and are expected to check their own props and costumes prior to the show. Remember to be courteous to your stage manager and be ready to go when cued. Productions are generally around two hours and contain one ten to fifteen minute intermission depending on the show and the director.

Buy Outs

As a fundraising opportunity, the theatre allows groups to ‘buy out’ the theater for special, extra performances. These performance are generally as a Saturday matinee. Actors are expected to be present for all buy outs as well as normal productions.

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