Parent Handbook 2018-01-10T12:07:29+00:00

SCPA Parent Handbook

VOCAL DIRECTOR – Lynn Semelsberger



Tesoro High School Dance Room

Chaparral Elementary School MPR
29001 Sienna Pkwy
Ladera Ranch, CA 92694

Ladera Ranch Middle School MPR
29551 Sienna Pkwy
Ladera Ranch, CA 92694

Capistrano Valley High School
26301 Via Escolar
Mission Viejo, CA 92692


  1. Be on time.

    1. Cast A and Juniors – You are the first cast of the day on Tuesday & Thursday.  Please do not drop off until 5 minutes before start time.

    2. Casts B, C and D – Wait outside until your cast is called in to begin.

  2. Bring:

    1. Script (once you receive it)

    2. Jazz Shoes

    3. GIRLS – All girls must come with their hair in NEAT low ponytail.

    4. Water

    5. Snack

    6. Highlighter

    7. Pencil

  3. Arrive practiced and prepared!

Vocal Rehearsals

Casts A, B, C, D and Juniors will have scheduled vocal rehearsals either one hour before your child’s rehearsal (or one hour after) depending on the cast.

Juniors: THURS – Rehearsal 3:15 – 4:30 pm, Vocal Rehearsal 4:30 – 5:30 pm
Cast A
: TUES – Rehearsal 3:00 – 5:00 pm, Vocal Rehearsal 5:00 – 6:00 pm
Cast B: TUES – Vocal Rehearsal 4:00 – 5:00 pm, Rehearsal 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Cast C: THURS – Rehearsal 4:30 – 6:30 pm, Vocal Rehearsal 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Cast D: THURS – Vocal Rehearsal 5:30 – 6:30 pm, Rehearsal 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Cast E: Rehearsals and Vocal Rehearsals will be scheduled after auditions

Music Files

Each cast will have a Dropbox folder with their cast’s music.  Do not use another cast’s files, as the song keys have been picked specifically for your child’s cast. You should be able to listen to the tracks without a Dropbox account, but sometimes when attempting to view the files on your phone, it is easier to create a free account.  It is your responsibility to check this folder often when homework is posted!

Please bookmark the link to your cast’s Dropbox folder.  The link will also be in a “pinned” post in your cast’s Facebook group.  If viewing from your phone, please click the “VIEW PINNED POST” at the top of the group to view it.

DO NOT DOWNLOAD THESE FILES…. please just stream them.  Keys will be changed throughout the show so if you download them in the beginning of the run, you will be using the wrong keys.

Cast Moms

We will be assigning 1-2 parents per cast as your “Cast Mom”.  Their (volunteer) job is to support Ms. Irene’s rehearsal plan and to help keep the rehearsals running smoothly by making sure the room stays focused. If you have any questions about the show or rehearsals, your Cast Mom can help get answers for you.

Your Cast Mom can be reached via email at:  – Stephanie Stein  – Cheyenne Hibbard, Ashley Pharris  – Leah Jacobs, Lorrie White  – Victoria Roach  – Candace Wood

Absence and Attendance Policy

Theatre is a “team” activity which often involves scene partners, group interaction and group choreography; absences affect the entire cast. We encourage strong commitment and full participation.  If your child has 3 or more unexcused absences, their role is subject to re-casting.  Any absences you put on your conflict form during registration will be considered EXCUSED.

If your child will miss all or part of their weekly rehearsal, please email your Cast Mom’s Email (listed above) with your Child’s Name and the Date Absent in the subject line.

We follow the Capo Unified school calendar and do not have rehearsal Thanksgiving week, the 2 weeks at Christmas break, or Capo Unified’s Spring Break (April 3-7, 2017).

Email Communication

When you registered your child online, you submitted a primary email address.  This is the email address that will be used for any emailed communication.  If you would like another email address added (another parent/guardian or babysitter) please email your cast mom and we will add it.

Discipline Policy

  • Cast members are expected to be respectful and pay attention during rehearsal even during scenes they are not in. Excessive talking on the sidelines is not permitted.

  • Offensive or harassing behavior by any cast member OR cast member’s parent/guardian toward anyone for any reason will not be tolerated and is grounds for immediate dismissal from SCPA/LPA at the discretion of the Directors.

  • All other issues will be handled with a verbal warning followed by written warning and parent conference at which time consideration for dismissal or cast demotion will be discussed.

Observation Policy

We do allow parents and siblings to observe our regular rehearsals.  However, parents are NOT allowed to observe any dress rehearsals or tech rehearsals. Only production team members and green room volunteers are allowed in these rehearsals.


Scripts will be provided in the first 2-3 weeks of rehearsals. Lost scripts can be replaced for a $20 printing fee.

Show T-Shirts

Your child will be given a show t-shirt in week 5 or 6 of rehearsals.  Sizes were chosen when you registered your child online.  If the size you ordered does not fit, we will make every effort to exchange once all the shirts have been handed out. Cast members will be expected to wear these shirts to rehearsals tech rehearsals.


Ms. Irene will be posting videos, homework and notes specific to your cast. At least one parent is asked to join the Facebook group for your child’s cast.

Parents of children in our younger casts are asked to make sure their child is doing their homework each week and comes prepared. Parents of older children are asked to encourage them to be practiced and prepared!








For 2 hour rehearsals, there will be a snack break. We have several cast members in each cast who have nut allergies.  Do not pack any snacks or food with ANY type of nuts. 

We usually have chips and candy for sale for $1. We do not sell water. Please come with plenty of water.

Tech Rehearsals – We only allow water, plain saltines and pretzels at the theater.

Text Alerts

Being subscribed to our TEXT ALERT system is very important. Texts will be sent out to notify you of any changes to rehearsals or show call times. We will also use the text alert system if a child gets sick before a show and we need a replacement.

Once your child has been placed in a cast, please sign up for important Text Alerts.  We require at least one parent to be subscribed.
(these texts will only be used for very important messages and reminders FOR YOUR CAST!)

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpajunior

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpacasta

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpacastb

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpacastc

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpacastd

Send a text to this number:  81010
With this message:  @scpacaste

If anyone has trouble with 81010, you can try texting to (949) 540-9252.

Volunteer Hours

In order to keep our tuition costs down, we rely on each of our SCPA families to help put on these amazing shows! We ask that parents put in a minimum of 3 hours of volunteer time per cast member (or 6 hrs per family with 2+ cast members) to support the show. All volunteer hours must be fulfilled by a parent of the cast member. For safety reasons, volunteers cannot bring children with them. We realize that some parents are unable to provide volunteer hours because of busy schedules, work obligations or childcare conflicts.  For this reason, we allow a volunteer buy-out option for $100 per cast member (or $150 per family), payable in our web store.

Some volunteer opportunities available: Green Room, Runner, Concessions, Candy Grams, Will Call Tickets, Door Monitors, and After Show Clean Up.

Program Biographies

In the next few weeks, we will be collecting information for our Show Programs.  Each child will have their picture taken at rehearsal, and next to their picture in the program we print a little biography.  You will be getting an email in the next week or so with instructions on how to submit your child’s biography online.  There is a strict word limit of 75 words.  Keep it short and sweet!

Program Ads

We will be selling two types of ads for our programs.  “Break a Leg” ads are a fun way for parents to place a picture and some words of encouragement for their child.  Business ads are a great way for local businesses to advertise to families/friends of almost 200 cast members.  Stay tuned for an email with program advertising rates and deadlines.  Please let us know if you would like to be part of our Marketing Team to help sell ads to local businesses!

Tech Week

Technical week (also called tech week) refers to the week prior to a cast’s first show in which all of the technical elements (such as costumes, lights, sound, set and makeup) are present during rehearsal for the first time.  The purpose of tech week is to rehearse the show with all technical elements in place. This allows the actors to become familiar with the set and costumes, the technical production crew to iron out unforeseen problems, and the director to see how everything comes together as an artistic whole. Tech week is when practical problems with the implementation of production elements are discovered. For example, an actor may report that their costume restricts their movement or that a prop is overly cumbersome. A door that performed fine the week before may bang shut too loudly now that there are live microphones on the stage.

TECH REHEARSALS ARE MANDATORY.  No conflicts are allowed.  Please rearrange all other activities around your cast’s technical rehearsals.

Costume Guidelines

  • Cast members will change in front of each other throughout the show, so SCPA requires specific undergarments to be worn at all times and costumes will go over these clothes.

  • All cast members are responsible for their personal undergarments and socks (this will be communicated by the costume team).

  • Generally, girls will be required to wear a nude, white or black tank and black dance or sports shorts. Generally, boys will be required to wear a white or black tank top or t-shirt and black sports shorts.  The costume department will determine the exact colors on a show-by-show basis.

  • In some cases, the costume team may ask your child to bring a clothing item from home.

  • Black Jazz Shoes must be worn during all rehearsals and on stage. Characters with specific shoe needs (other than black jazz shoes) will be contacted by the costume department.

  • Only saltine crackers or pretzels can be eaten while in costume

Tech Meals

Tech rehearsals can be long and sometimes span a meal time.  If your child’s cast is rehearsing over a normal meal time, we will have a catered meal available for sale.  A Tech Meal menu will be provided ahead of time.  Our caterer does not use nuts when preparing our tech meals.  However, we cannot accommodate most other allergies (including gluten allergies).  You are free to pack your child a meal (or drop one off for them) if they have allergies or do not like what is being served.

Banker’s Boxes for Tech Week

Each cast member needs a lidded “Bankers Box” marked with FIRST AND LAST NAME and cast letter (J, A, B, C, D, E) on all four sides AND the top.  Copy paper boxes or other types of boxes will NOT WORK.

This box will be used throughout tech week and the performances to store personal items including clothing, shoes, hairbrush, and water bottles. Your child is welcome to decorate the outside of their box as long as their information is clearly legible as noted above.  Decorating your box in a unique way will make it easier to find quickly!  Some kids like to use wrapping paper or duct tape!

Closer to tech week, we will be selling Bankers Boxes at rehearsals for $2 each (cash).  If your child plans to do more SCPA shows, they can reuse this same box over and over!

After Show Meet and Greet

After each of your child’s shows, the cast will enter the lobby area for a meet and greet in FULL COSTUME!  This is great time to take amazing pictures with your family and friends.  Cast members will have approximately 15 minutes to mingle before being called back to get microphones off and return their costumes.  (Please note – only our technical crew is allowed to touch the microphones.)

Candy Grams

Candy Grams will be sold at each show before the performance and during intermission.  A Candy Gram consists of one notecard to write an encouraging message to your thespian that will be delivered during the show to uplift and inspire AND one treat of your choice.

Show DVDs

For a $20 donation to Ladera Performing Arts, you will receive a DVD of your child’s cast. DVDs will be available within 6-8 weeks of your child’s show.  Order information will be emailed to all casts closer to the show dates.


Photos of your child performing in costume will be sold online.  Photos are DIGITAL ONLY – a download link will be emailed to you as soon as you complete your order.  You can take these photos and post to social media or print at your favorite photo lab.  PLEASE CLICK THE DOWNLOAD LINK AS SOON AS YOU GET THE EMAIL.  Once we pull the photos down approx. 30 days after the show date, your photos will no longer be available for download.  We use a company called SHOOTPROOF.  We will post information about photos closer to the show dates.