The Student Alternative Theatre Company (SATCo) is a student driven theatre company that works to reinforce the teachings of the University of Victoria Theatre Department, as well as assist in the development of new work, and provide quality opportunities to emerging artists while upholding a strong artistic vision.
The main principle of SATCo is to provide opportunities for students to use the skills they learn throughout their degrees. Many students rely on SATCo to gain experience in areas such as directing, stage management, design & acting. Since SATCo is a learning environment, it’s a great way to get practical experience in a safe, supportive, and professional environment.
Every fall and spring semester, we put out a call for students to submit short plays, 30-50 minutes in length. We choose three of these plays to produce in each season. Then, teams of students are put together for each play: directors, designers, stage managers, & technical teams. Auditions are then held by the directors to cast their productions. It’s a very quick process; each show has 1-4 weeks to rehearse, depending on their slot in the season, followed by three performances. The shows are performed in the Barbara MacIntyre Theatre at the Phoenix, a little black-box studio theatre that offers flexibility for student designers.
Throughout the school year, SATCo also hosts some events: “Speed Dating”, a networking event to meet other artists in the department, a forum, & Pick of SATCo, where students vote for a show in the season to receive funding from SATCo to remount, often at Fringe or elsewhere. In 2019, we also debuted a new event, a “crossover” with the Theatre Course Union. For this event, the TCU board and the SATCo board compete against each other in an improv competition as a fundraiser for TCU, to provide emergency bursaries for theatre students.
The SATCo Board
SATCo is run by a board of students that changes every year. There are usually 9-12 board members; the number varies as some positions can be held by two people, or someone may take on an assistant. Board members get to experience the administrative side of theatre and learn how a theatre company is run.
SATCo Company Email (all board members can be reached here): firstname.lastname@example.org
General Managers: Vanessa Wood (above) & Sophi Murias (below)
The general managers are responsible for the overall function and artistic vision of the company. This includes supporting board members and creative teams and making final decisions on issues that arise during the season. They love to brainstorm ideas in collaboration with the rest of the board on how to improve the company and keep it new and exciting for the creative teams!
Vanessa is in 4th year, and she’s involved in Directing, Front of House, Performance, & Applied Theatre. Her one word to describe SATCo is ‘community’, and if she could own any unusual animal as a pet, it would be an Elephant.
Assistant General Manager: Miriam Dumitra
The assistant general manager is responsible for documenting the goings-on of the SATCo board, including the organization of SATCo communication and files. They also help the general managers with some of their responsibilities. The person holding this position is often multi-talented and ready for anything!
Miriam is in third year, involved in Tech, Design, & Writing. If she could describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘student-focused’. She would choose a Dragon as her ideal unusual pet.
Treasurer: Sydney Hunt
The treasurer handles the financial side of SATCo, managing donations and creating a budget for the season. Our treasurer ensures all the shows have the resources they need to create the best work they can!
Sydney is in third year, involved in Arts Administration, Production, Directing, & Writing. If she had to describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘wow-they-don’t-teach-you-this-stuff-in-school-this-is-awesome’, and her ideal unusual pet is a Salmon.
Head of Marketing: Ashley Richter
The head of marketing is primarily responsible for the overall aesthetic of the marketing materials for each season. They run our social media accounts to keep everyone updated on shows and events, create posters, and take pictures at each dress rehearsal.
Ashley is in fourth year, involved in Marketing & Communications, Directing, & Performing. If she could describe SATCo in one word, it would be ‘collaborative’, and if she could have one unusual animal as a pet it would be a Velociraptor.
Marketing Assistant: Kaylee Cavanagh
It’s a lot of work to market a season of plays, so the marketing assistant helps the marketer get everything done. There’s a lot of training and skills needed to be Head of Marketing, so this is an opportunity to train someone to take over the position smoothly.
Kaylee is in second year, involved in Performance, Directing, & Marketing. If she could describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘connecting’ and if she could have any unusual animal as a pet it would be a Dragon.
Technical Director: Emily Trepanier
Technical directors are responsible for all technical aspects of the plays, including sound, lighting, projections, and rigging. They provide guidance for designers, run tech weekends, and ensure that everything is done in a safe way.
Emily is in third year, involved in Tech, Design, Performance, & Directing. Her one word to describe SATCo is ‘application’, and her ideal unusual animal to have as a pet is a Dolphin.
Audio Technician: Ariel Pretty
The audio technician is a brand-new position created for our season of radio plays. The audio technician works with the technical director to guide sound designers through the creative process, provide advice and technical support, and edit the final copy of the audio performance.
Ariel is in second/third year, involved in Tech, Sound Design, Lighting Design, & Video Design. She describes SATCo as ‘engaging’ and would choose an Axolotl as her ideal unusual pet.
Liaison: Branden Sugden
The liaison serves as a link between the creative teams and the board. They convey information between the two parties, act as a support for the show teams, and ensure that rehearsals are conducted in a safe and productive way.
Branden is in fourth year, involved in Directing, Performance, Dramaturgy & Stage Combat. If he could describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘hands-on’, and if he could have any unusual animal as a pet it would be a Penguin.
Front of House Manager: Taylor Williams
Our front-of-house manager is responsible for the audiences that attend each show. They deliver an informative speech before each show, ensure that the audience experience is comfortable and safe, and handle emergencies that take place during a performance.
Taylor is in third year, involved in Front of House, & Performance. She describes SATCo as ‘challenging’, and she would choose a Koala as an unusual pet, if she had the chance.
The year representatives are a connection between the board and each year cohort of students. Each year rep is responsible for communicating information about SATCo to their year, answering questions, and bringing student concerns to SATCo’s attention.
First Year: Matthew Gordon
Matthew is in first year, involved in Performance, Directing & Writing. He describes SATCo as ‘opportunity’, and if he could have any unusual animal as a pet, it would be a Crow.
Second Year: Jerry Lesperance
Jerry is in second year, involved in Directing & Stage Management. If she could describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘inspiring’, and if she could have any unusual animal as a pet it would be a Dragon.
Fourth Year (and beyond): Rachel Macadam
Rachel is in fourth year, involved in Costume & Set Design. if she could describe SATCo in one word it would be ‘enterprising’, and if she could have any unusual animal as a pet it would be a Chinchilla.