What are the content filters available and how does StageAgent rate content?
StageAgent has developed a system of ratings designed to give an instructor help in picking shows typically suitable for their grades and to filter out shows accessible to students through the StageAgent for Schools platform. There is no uniform ratings system for theatre, so in developing our system, we have looked to the film and television ratings systems and taken guidance from play and musical licensing sites where available.
These ratings are meant to be a guide for the instructor, and as so much of theatre is subjective and a student’s maturity level can vary from child to child, we have done our best to use these guidelines when rating the show content on the site. Note that individual community standards vary widely. While StageAgent ratings can provide guidance, teachers should still rely on their own judgment and insights into their own communities.
You have the option of narrowing the selection of content that your students see. Note that most monologue and scene content will receive the same rating of the core show guide, even if the specific monologue content is of a lesser concern ratings-wise, e.g. a PG-13 rated show might have a monologue that is entirely suitable for a general audience or young performer, but since a good actor should read the script before performing any monologue, the content will be filtered by the PG-13 rating, and not General.
Shows on StageAgent are given one of the following three ratings:
Youth (Y)/General Audiences (G) - Shows that are aimed at a general family audience and can be performed/attended by most ages, including shows that are specifically written for Elementary and Middle School performers and audiences. The show contains little or no violence, no strong language, and little or no sexual dialogue or situations. There could be comic or fantasy depiction of mild violence. There is no content that should be an issue for these grades. Shows in this range can also be found by using the StageAgent Show Search using the IDEAL FOR category search using Elementary and/or Middle School or Theatre for Young Audiences. There are also KEYWORD searches for Junior Versions, and Theatre for Young Audiences or TYA among others. ‘G-rated’ shows will be displayed to students for all filter settings.
Thirteen Plus (PG-13) - Shows that are suggested for students in later middle school grades and up. The show may contain mild language and some violence depicted on or offstage that could bother younger children who may not still understand that theatre is not real life. Some mild sexual situations may be involved. Shows in this range can also be found by using the StageAgent Show Search using the IDEAL FOR category search using Middle School, High School (many shows labeled for High School audiences are still rated PG-13) or Theatre for Young Audiences. There are also KEYWORD searches for Junior Versions, and Theatre for Young Audiences or TYA among others. ‘PG-13’ shows will be displayed to students with either the ‘Full access’ or ‘Limited access’ filters.
Mature Audiences (M) - Shows that contain depictions of themes best handled by a mature high school student or adults. The show may contain adult themes and situations, intense language, staged depictions of violence that could be disturbing. Shows in this range can also be found by using the StageAgent Show Search using the IDEAL FOR category search using High School, Mature Audiences, College/University, or Professional Theatre. ‘Mature’ shows will only be displayed to students with the ‘Full access’ filter.