A Brief History of Theatre at Stetson and Theta Alpha Phi:
As shown by the scrapbooks, theatre at Stetson dates back to at least 1896. In 1914 the Green Room Club of John B. Stetson University was founded, with the six charter member students including Irving C. Stover. It was written that "the purpose of this fraternity shall be to unite in closer companionship those among college and university students already bound by the love of dramatic art in order that they may create and encourage interest in the best of dramatic productions." The initiation fee for all members was $1. The goal of this Green Room Club was said to be "to promote the dramatic interests of the University and to promote student interest in the study, production, and composition of plays." According to the official bylaws dated May 11, 1914, there were four student officers (a President, a Secretary/Treasurer (Historian), a Business Manager, and a Director of the plays) who made up the Executive Committee, and who had the power to choose all casts. Their first show was "Brooks at Stetson" on May 22, 1914
According to former National TAP President H. Adrian Rehner, in 1918 the local drama group at Oklahoma A&M College decided to develop an emblem indicating dramatic interest, give its member pins, and join a National group to gain prestige. Upon discovering that there was no national drama group, they decided to organize one, sent out invitations to other schools, and set up a constitution. On December 22, 1919, a Charter was obtained, and the group became a National Drama Organization under the laws of the state of Oklahoma. Theta Alpha Phi is thus the oldest National Theatre Honorary Fraternity in the United States.
Within the first year, 1919-1920, five other charters were granted, with our group at Stetson being one of these six charter member chapters. Our Florida Alpha chapter helped these other five original chapters to develop a Theta Alpha Phi induction ritual and pin design.
At this point, in early 1920, the theatre group at Stetson began calling itself "The Green Room Club Players of Theta Alpha Phi, Florida Alpha Chapter."
Tile goal of Theta Alpha Phi is to increase interest, stimulate creativeness, and recognize excellence in all of the allied arts and crafts of the theatre. Theta Alpha Phi now has chapters in colleges and universities across the nation. In the fall of 1930, the Assembly Hall of John B. Stetson University opened with Dr. Hulley's play Apollo and the Muses. By 1931 this assembly hall had been christened the Little Theatre, and in May of 1938 it was dedicated the Irving C. Stover Little Theatre. Today it is called, simply, Stover Theatre.
For many years, since at least 1950, there have been five student Theta Alpha Phi officer positions at Stetson (a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and a Historian) plus a faculty advisor. This year, 2000, our club has decided to add two additional officer positions, that of Student Government Association Representative, and that of Webmaster, for the 2000-2001 school year.