DTM – FAQs & Tips

Entries in the National Design Exposition must have been produced and production photos must be included. Designers may be nominated and/or enter multiple times in this exposition.

Entries in the Regional Design Exposition must not have been produced and could be class projects. Designers can enter multiple times in this exposition as well.

Designs cannot be entered one year in the Regional Exposition and the following year in the National (produced) Exposition.

There are no specific requirements regarding what must be included in your presentation though what following below is just some suggestions to help guide you. Simply present those materials that best tell the story of your design process.

Materials that have been helpful in communicating how you arrived at your design could include research, inspirational imagery, sketches, diagrams, schematics, production bibles, drafting, production paperwork, models or any other materials that helped you arrive at your final design.

The most successful Lighting entries include not only a light plot but section, board hookup and cue synopsis. Research images and a description of your process and how the design evolved are very beneficial.

Sound designers should have multiple copies of your cues on CDs. This allows several respondents to listen to your cues at once. We will not provide CD players so you should plan to bring your own. You may supply your own headsets but ear buds are to be avoided. Photos linked to your cues are really helpful. If you have a favorite cue make sure it is easy for the respondents to find and hear it.
Respondents always want to know if and how you manipulated and combined sounds, effects and music so be ready to explain this to them during your presentation.

Stage Managers often benefit by including production photographs along with your production bibles. We do not allow you to have displays so plan on putting these production photos in with your prompt books.

Generally, design entries are displayed on 4’ x 8’ vertical panels. Your display must fit entirely on the panel and not overhang into walkways. We will try to provide pedestals for models and chairs for production bibles but we encourage you to bring your own just in case.
We welcome and encourage displaying actual costumes but cannot provide dress forms.
Allied Design and Technology presentations and Stage Management books are generally displayed on tables.
Design, Technology & Management Presentations should proudly and boldly feature your name but delete or cover the name of your school so the reputation of the school is not a factor.

We will provide tacks and pins for you to display your work. If you run into special problems ask and we may be able to help you find a solution. We want you to succeed.

Other than sound, we cannot guarantee you electricity for your display. It is best not to plan on it.

The most successful presentations include research and process. We like to know how the ideas and the designs evolved. Own your design choices: don’t depend on “It’s what the director wanted”.

You do need to be present for the respondent critique to be considered for the prizes but we understand that production calendars do not always coincide with the festival. We may be able to make special arrangements for you if you are busy mounting another production and we know about this ahead of time.

Designs in the Exposition MUST stay on display until Saturday mid-afternoon. If you need to leave the festival early have one of your friends take down your display for you. We are unable to ship your entry back for you.

Entries should be pre-registered. Additional entries may be accepted at the festival only if space permits.

You will want to avoid overly produced display panels. Displays that have an abundance of visually distracting backgrounds are seldom awarded honors and always make it more difficult to see the beauty and clarity of your design ideas.

In our region the DTM Awards are announced after the production on Friday evening. Students who are going on to the Kennedy Center or USITT have a short meeting right after the ceremony at the front of the theatre.

Most important of all: Smile, breathe, relax and enjoy. We all want you to be at
your very best and are here to support you.

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