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Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student


Ten Must-Haves for first-year BFA Students

I'm packing up to move back to campus for the senior year of my BFA Musical Theatre program. Here are ten items from my must-have list for Theatre/Music/Musical Theatre Students:

1. An online document organization system. Scan sheet music or sides with your phone and upload them to an online platform. I use Google Drive, which allows me to log in from any computer and access my files! A digital copy is always available and ready for printing. Other things to add to your online database include resumes, headshots, and accompaniment recordings.

2. Multiple 3-ring binders. For music students, I encourage you to make three different binders to hold sheet music: one with a clean hard copy of the music (that is also scanned into your online database!), one with a copy for lessons that you can write on, mark up, and use for practice, and one binder that holds EVERYTHING you have ever worked on. Keeping these separate ensures that you have backup copies, a clean copy for an accompanist or duet partner, and one to write all over. But don't worry, you only need to take one for lessons and practice/rehearsal, so you won't be hauling three big binders all over campus. Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

3. Writing utensils. Get thin 3-ring zipper pouches for each of your music/script binders, and keep them stocked with pencils, pens, erasers, highlighters, and sticky notes. Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

4. Water Bottle. Keep yourself hydrated through rehearsal. I prefer reusable plastic bottles with a lid and straw so that I don't have to spend valuable break time unscrewing a lid, or fear that it will be too noisy if it drops on the floor or tips over. Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

5. Loose Leaf Paper. When accepting notes post-rehearsal, I use hole-punched paper to take notes, then slide the paper into the rings of my script/score right after the page the note is applicable. This way, I know the note's context and can quickly flip to the place in the script I need to review

6. Comfy slides or slippers. After a long rehearsal in character shoes, dance shoes, or just being on your feet all day, slipping on some slides before walking back to your dorm is the best feeling ever. Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

7. Snacks. Long rehearsals and class days sometimes don't leave you with the time to swing by the dining hall. Keep your energy up with snacks that make you feel good! My favorite rehearsal snacks are chewy granola bars (not the crumbly kind that gets crumbs everywhere) and orange slices (no loud bite or crunch).

8. Icy Hot or Arnica Gel. Treat sore muscles or bruises after class/rehearsal to ensure that your body is feeling its best.Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

9. Vocal Wellness Tools. Keep a stock of tea bags, cough drops, and lozenges for sore throats, or use Vitamin C drink mix to help prevent one in the first place! To clear out the sinuses, try a voice steamer. Student Blog: Packing List for a Musical Theatre Student

10. A Can-Do Attitude. College is tough. You've worked hard to get here, but the work has only just begun. Stay positive and continue to focus on your goals. Most importantly, have the time of your life!

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From This Author Student Blogger: Emily Ownby