Troupe Policies and Procedures

These policies apply specifically to Traveling Troupe and Commedia Troupe.

All general summer camp policies also apply to the Troupes.

Auditions are Binding:

By auditioning for a Troupe, you agree to attend camp if accepted.  Exception: after auditioning for Commedia Troupe, you have 48 hours to let us know if you wish to be removed from consideration.  Since Commedia is an unusual art form, we understand that you may not find it to your liking once you have tried it – and it is important to try it before committing to it!

General Expectations and Standards:

Traveling Players Ensemble, Inc. will dismiss any camper who exhibits behavior that, in our sole discretion, is unsafe or disrupts or distracts from the educational mission of the program.  The following are absolutely not permitted by participants in Traveling Players Ensemble programs: (1) harassment, (2) sexual intimacy, (3) theft or misuse of property, (4) the use and/or possession of illegal drugs and/or alcohol, and (5) the use of any tobacco products.  Violations lead to dismissal and tuition is not refunded.

Time Commitment and Expectations:

Excepting for emergencies, all performers are expected to be with their ensemble for the entire duration of the tour.  Tours end at noon on the final day, at which time campers will be released to their parents.  The final morning of tour is extremely important for closing activities and clean-up, and campers should not expect to be released early from it.  In 2018, the final days of the tours are August 4th (Traveling Troupe) and August 17th (Commedia Troupe)

Electronics and Cell Phone Policy – Tours are unplugged.

In a continuation of our electronics policy, campers will not have unlimited access to their cell phones or other electronic devices while on tour.  We encourage you to leave the phones, kindles, etc. at home when you pack for tour.  If you feel better sending a phone with your child, please understand that they will be given access to their phone in limited circumstances only.

Contact Information while on Tour
Your child’s safety is our primary concern.  While on tour, the staff will be in daily contact (reception permitting) with the main camp office.  If any issues come up on tour, they will contact the camp office, and parents will be contacted immediately if necessary.  If anything comes up at home, please call the camp office at 703-987-1712 and we will connect with the tour staff to help you resolve the issue or communicate to your camper.  Please understand that, while cell coverage has improved tremendously in recent years, there are still places on tour where service will be limited or nonexistent.

Exceptions (when you might have your phone)
If you choose to send a cell phone on tour with your camper, we will keep it safe on tour.  Phones will be returned to the campers once on most days for up to 15 minutes, schedule allowing.  Traveling Players cannot guarantee a consistent time of day.  We cannot guarantee that the campers will have consistent access to charging or reception throughout the tour.  Phones may also be returned at times when the group disperses, such as when exploring Colonial Williamsburg, or to take pictures at scenic places or group activities.  In the event of emergency, staff may return camper’s phones for safety purposes.

Reasons for this Policy

There are many reasons for this policy, which is similar to that in place at most sleepaway camps.  Over recent years, we have found that cell phones have consistently damaging effects on the campers’ experience and safety on tour.  Since we implemented this policy, campers’ experiences significantly improved.  Cell phones:

  • Allow campers to avoid interacting with their peers at camp, denying them the chance to form new friendships or deepen existing ones.
  • Allow parents and campers to remove staff from the communication loop, depriving staff of information vital to keeping the campers safe while at camp.
  • Allow any worrisome events at home, with friends, at school, etc. to continue to impact campers, instead of giving them a well-deserved “vacation.”
  • Reduce the ensemble’s willingness to take the risks necessary to good acting, by introducing the risk that “embarrassing” behavior could be recorded and widely shared on the internet.
  • Distract campers from their jobs on tour, interfering with timely travel, set up and strike, technical needs, food prep, and entering stage on-time.
  • Create anxiety over possible loss or damage.
  • Prevent campers from enjoying the unique experience of being on tour.