It is no secret that Grand Canyon University’s Fine Arts and Production College is talented and offers high-quality learning for its students. One can view the diverse skills at a showcase or production on campus. Did you know, however, about Alpha Psi Omega?
What is Alpha Psi Omega?
Alpha Psi Omega originated in the early twentieth century when interest in the dramatic arts grew on college campuses across the country. In 1921, at Fairmount State College in Fairmont, West Virginia, a college was started and they hired a faculty director in 1923 before forming the Masquers.
The Masquers had the job of presenting a season of four to five productions a year for students and the general public. In 1924, they searched for a national organization to join, but since there was no known organization, they formed their own. On August 12, 1925, the first Alpha Psi Omega members were initiated and each chapter was called a “cast.” Fairmont College then became the Alpha Cast and the Marshall College in Huntington, West Virginia became the Beta Cast. A member from Huntington came up with the name “Playbill” for the national magazine which was promptly used.
Within a year, eighteen more casts were formed and the first national convention was held on December 27-28, 1926 at the Palmer House in Chicago. The national conventions, which are called Grand Rehearsals, are now held once a year at the Southeastern Theatre Conference.
Today, Alpha Psi Omega has over 600 casts and is the largest honor society in America. They pride themselves in encouraging dramatic production at every step in a person’s academic career.
New Things to Learn and Shape Your Future
The College of Fine Arts and Production’s Alpha Psi Omega offers tons of knowledge for their members that will no doubt help shape their future and overall careers after college. We asked a few members what they have learned and their plans for the future:
Madison Cymoen Kesterson: I am working on my application to be a student member of the North American Drama Therapy Association. If I get accepted, I’ll gain all sorts of tools and support.
Canry McCullers: Last year, we had Robbie Harper from PT come and he did an audition workshop. He said that the sooner we start seeing ourselves as professionals instead of students, the more confident and prepared we’ll be for rehearsals and auditions. It has changed and continues to change my audition and acting experience because my body, voice and acting choices are asking, “Is this okay?” less frequently, and are leaning more toward, “This is what I’m doing.”
Alpha Psi Omega offers their members so much from learning how to paint costumes, work on stage design and set them up for future endeavors. If you have an interest in theatre activities and want to gain tons of experience in the industry, think about joining Alpha Psi Omega!
If you want to learn more about Grand Canyon University’s arts program within the College of Fine Arts and Production, check out our website or click the Request More Information button on this page.