Just because you have a day job to fulfill your financial obligations, doesn’t mean you can’t still pursue your dream job. If you are a lover of live theater, there are numerous ways to get involved in the Bay area’s theater community. Whether it’s ushering, volunteering or getting on stage in a community theater, you can pursue your passion and serve your community at the same time. Here are just a few ways to get involved in Tampa Bay’s theater community.

Arts Council of Hillsborough County

1000 N. Ashley St., Suite 105
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 276-8250

The Arts Council actually oversees the majority of visual and performing arts organizations in Hillsborough County. With just a few clicks, you can see all of the employment and volunteer opportunities available to you on just one website. If you are artistically talented and want to share your passion with others, you can peruse the listing for schools and private studios looking for instructors of acting, voice and dance. If you are just seeking a fun hobby that includes your love for theater, you can comb through the list of volunteer opportunities for places like Moffit Cancer Center Arts in Medicine, Stageworks Theater and Jobsite Theater.

Straz Center for the Performing Arts
1010 N. W.C. MacInnes Place
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 222-1000

There’s no business like show business, and no one else does it quite like the Straz. Volunteer opportunities abound here with everything from ushering a show to assisting classroom teachers in the Patel Conservatory. All prospective volunteers need to fill out a four-page packet that includes your skills, interests, availability and volunteer background. Once your application is processed, you will be one of the hundreds of volunteers that saves the Straz center $500,000 annually — funds that go straight to the performing arts community.

Ruth Eckerd Hall
1111 McMullen Booth Road
Clearwater, FL 33759
(727) 791-7400

Ruth Eckerd Hall hosts a variety of programs and needs volunteers for all of them. You can volunteer yourself for concessions, office help, ushering or community events, such as arts festivals. To be considered for volunteer opportunities, you must fill out a four-page application that includes information such as your education level, availability and references. Before you know it, you will be working side by side with others just like you — arts and theater lovers who want to make a positive impact on the community.

Related: Best Volunteer Opportunities For Art Lovers In Tampa Bay

Carrollwood Playhouse
4335-5 Gunn Highway
Tampa, FL 33618
(813) 265-4000

If you’d rather be the one on the stage, the Carrollwood Playhouse puts on several shows per year for amateur actors in the community. Audition information varies from show to show, depending on what type of casting is needed, but generally, there will be a few days of open auditions followed by one evening of callbacks a few days later. Musical productions require an audition of approximately 32 bars in the same style of music as the show, while dramatic productions require a monologue of approximately two minutes. Also be prepared for cold readings from the script and check the Carrollwood Playhouse’s website for details specific to each round of auditions.

Masque Theatre
10901 N. 56th St.
Temple Terrace, FL 33617
(813) 252-1063

If you have a budding thespian in your home, the Masque Theater is the perfect setting for him or her to try out some acting, since it specializes in youth performances for ages four through 19. Audition requirements change based on what type of casting is required, but all details are posted on the Masque Theater’s auditions page on its website. Past productions include “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” and “The Music Man.”

Related: Best Venues For Spoken Word And Poetry Readings In Tampa

Amanda Mole has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil and cooking since she was tall enough to reach the stove. She believes that food provides more than just vital nutrients: it is an irreplaceable part of countless cultural and social activities. As a Tampa Bay resident for the past 21 years, she is well acquainted with the incredibly diverse range of restaurants, bars, and food festivals that the area has to offer. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.