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15 Ways You Can Get Involved in USP

Union Street Players is a non-profit volunteer organization. There’s not a person involved in USP who didn’t, at one time or another, take that courageous step to audition for a show or volunteer for a task. USP is a great way for new members of the community to meet new friends, be part of a short-term project, and have a lot of fun. Whether you’re an experienced stage hand, enjoyed being in shows back in your school days, or have being in a show on your bucket list, USP affords everyone a myriad of ways to get involved.

  1. Audition for a show. Whether you’ve had experience on stage or have always wanted to try it, USP offers opportunities for you to get in on the act. No roles are precast and everyone is welcome to audition. No experience is necessary. Almost every USP cast includes some one making their stage debut. Come on out and give it a shot!
  2. Be an usher. Small time commitment with direct benefits. Being an usher on performance night is a great way to meet cast and crew and enjoy the excitement of production. Each show’s producer is generally looking for volunteers 2-4 weeks prior to opening night. Ushers get to stay and watch the show for free (unless the show is sold out).
  3. Help with costumes. Each show requires a lot of help getting actors in the right costume. We are blessed to have the USP Costume Shop at our disposal, but we still need individuals with an eye for fashion, perhaps a little history, and dose of flair to make sure each character looks their best on stage.
  4. Be a production assistant. For those who are great with details and organizational skills, there are opportunities to help directors and producers with scheduling, keeping track of actors’ blocking, jotting rehearsal notes, communicating with the cast/crew, and a host of other tasks that come with running a production.
  5. Help build the set. For crafty construction types, being a part of the set crew is a fun way to work with a fun team of individuals in building a set that will function for the actors and wow the audience. If pounding nails, sawing lumber, and painting with a little ingenuity sounds like your kind of fun, come help our set crew.
  6. Be a stage hand. There are many individuals who aren’t excited about being in the spotlight, but love being part of a show’s success. Each show requires stage hands who open curtains, change the set between scenes, and make sure actors are in place for entrances. Plus, you get to wear a cool headset and talk with the other crew members during the show.
  7. Run the light/sound board. In a booth clear up in the back of the auditorium sit each show’s “Wizards of Oz” (e.g. “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!”) who are making things happen on stage. Our computerized lighting system and out updated audio equipment require individuals who love to work with technology and are every bit as crucial to a production as the actors on stage.
  8. Help with auditions. Every USP show begins with a series of auditions. As aspiring actors swarm to the Pella Community Center to try out of the show, we always need help checking people in, taking and printing photos, calling actors in and out of the auditorium, and reading scenes with actors.
  9. Assist with marketing. We can’t get audiences in the seats if we don’t get the word out. There are always opportunities to help with marketing efforts. Write an article, a tweet, or a blog post. Help send press releases, set up interviews with the media, and distribute posters.
  10. Help with props. Do you like scavenger hunts? Every show requires us to find a scavenger hunter’s list of items needed on stage known as “properties” or “props.” Where can we find a vintage typewriter? Who has a large set of multi-colored tupperware? If the thrill of the hunt is your thing, then you may be USP’s next Properties Master!
  11. Make Music. USP does a musical each year. With each musical comes a need for people with musical abilities. Vocal directors, music directors, accompanists, and instrumentalists. If you have music ability, then we likely have a place for you on our team!
  12. Dance Dance Dance. Our annual musicals also require individuals with choreography experience. If you love to dance, then consider helping choreograph our next production number.
  13. Hair and make-up. Shows almost always require actors to do certain things with hair or make-up to complete their on-stage character. USP is always looking for volunteers who like being creative with styling hair or applying stage cosmetics.
  14. Become a patron. We would not be successful without the financial assistance we receive from our many loyal patrons. Our mission is to continuously increase the production quality of our shows and that often requires investment in the latest audio, video, lighting, or stage technology. As a non-profit, we keep our ticket prices low to ensure that everyone can see our shows. This means that we value our financial patrons as key members of the USP team.
  15. Just come to a meeting. Still not sure where you might fit in? Don’t worry. We’ll find a place to plug you in. Consider simply stopping by our next meeting. Our monthly membership meetings are open to the public and they are always held the 2nd Monday of the month at 7:00 p.m. in Room 201 of the Pella Community Center (712 Union Street). Many of our members began their relationship with USP by simply showing up at a meeting. We invite you to stop by. We look forward to meeting you!

Please feel free to e-mail one of our Board members with questions or requests for more information:

2015-2015 USP Board of Directors (L-R) Denise Gregory, Deb Linn, Cyndi Atkins, Kim Beyer, Cody Kooi, Mark Schaefer, Jana De Zwarte
2015-2016 USP Board of Directors (L-R) Denise Gregory, Deb Linn, Cyndi Atkins, Kim Beyer, Cody Kooi, Mark Schaefer, Jana De Zwarte

Cyndi Atkins (Pres.): cyndiatkins@gmail.com
Deb Linn (V.P.): deb_linn@hotmail.com
Kim Beyer (Sec.): kim.beyer@comcast.net
Denise Gregory (Treas.): denise2352004@yahoo.com
Jana DeZwarte: punkrockjana@hotmail.com
Cody Kooi: cody.kooi@gmail.com
Mark Schaefer: mschaefer22@yahoo.com

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