About Open Space | Attending a Summer Event | Joining a Company | Participating in Our Summer Show

About Open Space

Who founded Open Space?

Beth and Alden Phelps, two great puppeteers and artists.

How old is Open Space?

We were officially founded in July of 1989.

Where is Open Space?

We are currently located at 16 Hanover Road, Reisterstown MD 21136.

Do you guys still use puppets?

We try. We are not as big on puppeteering any more but we still do love to dig back to our roots and use the occasional giant paper mache head.

What kind of events do you do?

We have two major shows: our winter show, which is a published play, and our Summer Playwright's Festival, which showcases original work. During the school year we have coffee houses showcasing our companies, as well as other fundraisers, such as our annual swing dance and movie night.

How do i find out about these events?

You can like our facebook page, or add your email to our mailing list (which you can do on the home page). We also have a snail mail list. We send out mailing typically twice a year. If you prefer this method, please email us your address at

Who works at Open Space?

All of us are volunteers and many of us are college students or recent college grads who have been with OSA since we were little.

What’s up with your building?

Our building is over 100 years old and is definitely in need of some tender loving care. We’ve been working to try and make her look nice but we need all the help we can get. If you would be interested in helping us we would love you forever. Contact us at

I have something to donate. Would you like it?

We are always happy to accept goods as donation. Contact us at

Attending a Summer Event

Where can I park?

You can park along the street or behind the Karen Sach’s dance building.

What does suggested donation mean?

As a non profit, we do not technically charge admission. We would love it, however if you could support us by giving us the full suggested donation. Our income is based solely on individual donations and the admission we get from events.

I’m going to an outdoor event. What should I bring?

We would suggest you bring bug spray. The bugs at Open Space are a little vicious. You are welcome to bring lawn chairs but we do have some metal chairs for your use. You also can bring food.

What happens if it rains?

Unfortunately, summer does bring storms, but we usually wait till fifteen minutes before curtain to cancel a show due to weather. We have even performed in light rain before. So if you don’t mind getting a little wet, we would recommend that you come anyway. If a show gets canceled because of rain, we cannot refund your money, but we can give you a voucher for another performance or another event.

Do you sell tickets in advance?

No, only at the door. We’re not that fancy.

Do you take credit cards?

Yes, for our shows we do accept cards. However, we do have to charge a 4% credit card fee.

Do you provide complimentary tickets for families who are coming to see their children perform?

No, because our tickets are actually very cheap and we cannot afford to give away that many tickets. The only way to gain free admission is to volunteer at the event.

Do you sell ads for your programs?

Yes, we do. We also welcome any businesses or individuals that would like to sponsor us. If you are interested please contact us at

Joining a Company

How old do you have to be to join?

Our children’s theatre company is for 3rd through 6th graders (so around 8 to 12 years old), and our studio company is for 7th to 12th graders (so between 13 to 18 years old). For our adult/teen improv class and our Push/ Pull contact improv group, you must be 14 years or older to join.

Do you need acting experience to join?

None at all. All you need is an interest. We welcome anyone regardless of experience.

Who teaches it?

Our classes are taught by Will Dalrymple, Paris Brown, Elora Maisenhelder, and Avery De Bow, who are all veterans of our company.

When do they meet?

Both companies meet for two 12 week long sessions. This year they will meet every Wednesday. Children’s Company meets from 6:30pm to 7:30pm. Studio Company meets from 7:30pm to 9pm. Our improv class meets for 10 weeks every Sunday from 7pm to 8:30pm

Do I have to show up every week?

Unless you have an important conflict, we ask all company members to show up every week on time. Sometimes we will have projects from week to week that cannot be finished without everyone there.

Does it cost anything?

Company sessions cost $140. Improv sessions cost $100. Payment is due by the second class. No refunds after the second class.

Do they perform?

All classes perform together at the end of each session. They perform in a winter coffee house, and at the end of the year at the Emmettt Awards.

What are the Emmett Awards?

The Emmett Awards are an Open Space tradition dating back to the beginning of Open Space. It is where the companies showcase the culmination of their work over the year, and where each member receives a special award from their teachers.

How do I join?

At the beginning of a session, you may register online. If a class has just started, we can make arrangements for you to join.  Please contact us at

Participating in our Summer Show

How do I audition?

Auditions are held in mid-May. You do not have to prepare anything. We give you the sides there. We do ask that you bring your summer schedule so we can prepare rehearsal schedules around your conflicts.

Is this just for young people?

We love to have people of any age. Our only age requirement is that you have to be at least 8 years old to participate.

What if I’m going on vacation or summer camp?

That’s fine! As long as it doesn’t conflict with our show dates and tech week (the week leading up to tour first performance), and as long as we know about it in advance we can work around it.

When do rehearsals usually occur?

Usually Sunday through Thursday in the evenings. Our festival consists of 5 to 7 ten minute plays, for which you might be in one or two. One play usually meets twice a week. If you prefer to only rehearse certain days out of the week, indicate that on your sheet.

Does it cost anything to participate?

We don’t charge you for being in the show, but we do ask that you pitch in and buy or provide certain basic costume pieces.

When is the show?

The first two weekends in August. Friday and Saturday performances are at 7, and Sunday performances are at 5 pm.

Should I bring anything to rehearsals?

Water (we have some but it’s better to bring your own), bug spray, your script, a pencil, and clothes that are comfortable to move in.