Frequently Asked Questions

Academy FAQAs the entire nation is faced with the challenge of making live theater and education safe for all, First Stage Theater Academy is working diligently to maintain our high level of theater training for our students.

Below are Frequently Asked Questions to help answer inquiries that families have. If you need additional information or have further questions, please email us at 

General Academy Info | Auditions | COVID Procedures

General Academy Info

Q: My student is interested in theater but hasn't taken any classes or been involved in any production. Where do we start?

A: We welcome students of all experience levels! Depending on the student's age, and the session offerings (School Year versus Summer), there are a variety of options. Contact the Academy via email or at (414) 267-2970 and one of our staff members will be happy to go over the best option for your student.

Q: I have a student that has taken classes or been involved in productions outside of First Stage. What classes should we look into?

A: We welcome experienced students of all styles! We offer audition-based Advanced Classes that run throughout the school year. Auditions for these classes take place in late August or early September each year. Depending on your student's age, we also offer a variety of audition-based Performance Experiences and Master Classes on a variety of areas of theatrical studies. These are led by professionals from throughout the country, and a wonderful stepping stone for young performers.
Experienced high-school students are also welcome to audition for our Young Company, which offers college and graduate-level training for serious performers. Young Company members have opportunities to perform in First Stage's season, at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, and work with professionals in exclusive master classes. 


Q: My student is interested in auditioning for one of First Stage's shows. Are they required to be enrolled in a class?

A: No, we welcome students from all experience levels to audition for us! Our Academy classes help develop strong performance skills and in some cases, even allow students to work with directors or actors from First Stage, but enrollment is certainly not a prerequisite for casting. Audition information can be found here; auditions take place in mid to late summer of every year. 

COVID Procedures


Q: Are you still offering in-person programming?

A: Yes! We are proud to say that we provided in-person programming throughout the summer of 2020 and currently during the 2020 School Year with great success. For students not yet in 1st grade, we are restricting it to virtual only.

As we are restricting who can enter the building, all presentations will be filmed, edited, and sent out to families for viewing. 

Q: How does your virtual programming work?

A: Our virtual Academy classes are access via Zoom. Links are emailed out to registered families within two days of the session. If an in-person class were to go virtual, Zoom links would be sent out families as soon as possible. Teaching Artists are prepared to pivot to virtual lesson plans, adjusting choreography and movement as needed. 

Q: How safe is your in-person programming?

A: We, First Stage, and the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center, are strictly committed to following CDC guidelines. Temperatures are taken at the main entry, only class participants are allowed in the building, masks are required throughout the entire class, and social distancing is in place so that in the case of any possible positive COVID case, exposure is extremely limited. Class times are staggered so that students are restricted to only their classmates, and each room is thoroughly cleaned and sanitized before any new groups are introduced to the space. We firmly believe that we are offering responsible and safe programming. For more details, please review our policies in place

In the case of any possible exposure, our Teaching Artists have created virtual lesson plans so that a pivot to virtual classes would be smooth for all students. Thorough communication will be provided by the Academy, via email or text.