Performing Arts

We are excited to bring you another year of amazing, talented performers –
musicians, dancers, actors, storytellers, and more!

Where to See Performances

Performers can be heard throughout the Pennsic marketplace, and can also be found at our two dedicated performance spaces:

  • The Performing Arts Tent is located with the Pennsic University – near the corner of Kurdson Way and Chandler’s Road (see map), and has facilities for performers, including a stage, lighting, a small backstage area, as well as a generous audience seating area under a fully covered pavilion.
  • The College of Performing Arts Amphitheater is an open air venue for daylight performances. Come bring an al fresco picnic while you sit in the shade and enjoy entertainment at the stage down on the green! Located behind the merchants on the Great Middle Highway, down in the grassy area seen from behind the bathhouse across from the Cooper’s Store (see map).

The schedule of performances will be available online after April 15th and will be in the Site Book at Pennsic.

For Performers

The Pennsic Performing Arts staff are ready to assist you in scheduling your performances and rehearsals so you may share your stage arts with the Known World!

To request performance space and time – please fill out and submit the following form by April 15th in order to be considered and have the information printed in the Site Book at Pennsic:

Performer Registration and Deadlines

Our deadline is April 15th to submit requests for performances and/or rehearsals in the Performing Arts Tent or the Amphitheater.

Any forms received after April 15th will be considered on a contingency basis in case of late or emergency cancellation of a scheduled performer.

Performance Styles

We would like to encourage a wide variety of acts, but they should deal with the time period and the interests of the Society for Creative Anachronism – specifically the Medieval and Renaissance periods and the peoples and cultures those periods encompass.

The exceptions are those performances which reflect specific aspects of our Society – its background, history, administration, and culture/traditions. Performances that are blatantly modern in subject matter, music, costuming, scenery, and instrumentation are not appropriate for performance at the Pennsic War.

Thank you for volunteering to share your talent and your passion for the performing arts with the Pennsic populace!

Volunteers Needed!

Pennsic War would not run without its volunteers, and the Performing Arts are no exception to that rule.

The five areas where we are seeking volunteers are:

  1. Performing Arts Set-up
    • Tuesday of Land Grab Week, we build the stage, curtains, rig house and backstage lights, and set the chairs. This starts at about 10 am and goes until we are done. Come help us make the tent into a theater worthy of the name!
    • Bring your cordless drills.
    • On Wednesday we set up the Amphitheater.
  2. Daily Openers
    • Every day, activities at the Performing Arts Pavilion begin at 8:30 am. We need someone each morning around 8am to help open up our walls. If you are an early riser and your camp is not, have we got a job for you!
  3. Water Bearing
    • Both the Performing Arts Pavilion and the Amphitheater have water coolers for the convenience of performers and audiences. These need to be filled every day. If you want to volunteer and only have 5-10 minutes to do so, we can use your help!
  4. Evening Light Board Operator / Light Board Operator Second & Nightly Closers
    • Sit at the light board during shows to bring up stage lights and house lights, help communication run smoothly between front of house and back stage, and announce shows as needed.
    • Help drop walls and straighten chairs at the end of the night after the final performance, often around 11pm. Split shifts are available.
  5. Performing Arts Strike
    • Thursday night of War week, after the final scheduled performance, we will break down everything. Again, bring your cordless drills. This will continue on Friday morning from 10 am until we are finished.
    • On Friday we also break down the Amphitheater.

To volunteer, please email Performing Arts for more information and the most up to date sign-up sheets, or simply fill out this form:

We would also like to remind our performers that they agree during the application process to supply two (2) volunteers for the performing arts venues for set up &/or performing arts strike.


Performing Arts Policies

  1. The Performing Arts Tent is subject to the Pennsic University Tent Use Policies.
  2. Artists who cannot abide by the policies are putting this year’s performance in danger of on-site cancellation as well as consideration for scheduling in future years.
  3. Performing Arts facilities have to run on schedule, for the enjoyment of all. Please respect your allotted time limits. Rehearsals and Performances that run beyond their scheduled time will be shut down and your chances of returning to Performing Arts stages in the future will be greatly diminished.
  4. Please be courteous and request ample time to set up and to strike your stage. Your requested time in the Performing Arts facilities must include these activities. Your group must also leave the stage, seating area, and backstage tidy and ready for the next performance group to use. Failure to clean up after your rehearsals or performance will result in a decreased chance of using the space in the future.
  5. There shall be no parking of vehicles around the Performing Arts Tent during performances. If your equipment cannot be carried to the tent you may have it dropped off during your setup time, but the vehicle must be moved before your performance begins. Vehicles cannot be used as a power source for amplifiers or other equipment. Vehicles left parked at the Performing Arts Tent or Amphitheater outside of your setup time will be reported to security.
  6. The Performing Arts Tent has very limited electric service. No microphones or sound system are provided. The electricity that runs to the tent will not support amplifiers or electric instruments of any kind. If your instrument needs amplification and you can provide battery or generator-operated equipment, you are welcome to do so, but the volume must be kept at a reasonable level and all evidence of modern amplification must be fully hidden from the audience’s view.
  7. The use of modern electric instruments such as keyboards and electric guitars or basses is not allowed. Amplified acoustic instruments are acceptable within the above terms.
  8. The outlets at the Performing Arts Tent are not to be used to charge phones or other small electronics – including video recorders. They are for official staff use only. Anything found plugged into our electricity will be turned in to Lost and Found.
  9. Sales of CDs or other merchandise is strictly prohibited in or around the Performing Arts tent, as is “passing the hat.” If you have merchandise to sell, you may contract with a merchant to sell it for you in the marketplace or contact Cindy Cooper to register as a Pennsic merchant.
  10. Only performances or rehearsals officially registered with Pennsic Performing Arts and following the rules and regulations, are posted in the Pennsic A&S schedule.
  11. Performers wishing to be invited back must provide two people to help with set up or tear down of the Performing Arts Spaces.(Tuesday/Wednesday of land grab week, and Thursday night/Friday of war week).
  12. There are no “traditional time slots” in the Performing Arts Tent. Be specific in asking for your date and time and please prepare to be flexible. Each request will be considered based on the following criteria:
    • How inclusive is the activity? Is it open to anyone who wishes to perform or is it a small group of performers or solo act?
    • How period or SCA relevant is the activity? Does it reflect the goals of the SCA – to research and re-create the various cultures of the Middle-Ages and Renaissance? Does it contribute positively to SCA culture through original works, compositions, and yes, filks and satires?
    • Did you submit an incomplete form? Incomplete requests will fall to the bottom of the pile automatically. We have many requests to process. Please don’t make us chase you down for more information.
    • How well have you followed policies in the past? Performers who have disregarded the policies of Performing Arts in the past will be given the least amount of consideration for a time slot on the stages.