The Oklahoma Community Theatre Association Festival (OCTAfest) is a state-wide biennial play festival that is the organization’s signature event. In accordance with OCTA’s mission to encourage excellence in theatre arts, the festival provides an opportunity for theatres to present their best artistic productions to the state, be adjudicated by nationally known theatre experts, and for audiences to see the best of community theatre performances. It is the first step in the national American Association of Community Theatre’s festival, in which the winners are invited to perform internationally. Two advancing plays are chosen during OCTAfest to advance to the regional festival, where one of those will be chosen to advance to the national festival. OCTA leads the nation with the most first and second place awards at regional and national festivals. Oklahoma theatres have performed at international festivals in Monaco, Canada and Germany. The first Oklahoma state theatre festival was held in 1970 and has continued every two years after that date. In 2004 the festival moved to the month of July, and the 23rd OCTAfest will be held in July, 2012 in Ponca City/Tonkawa.
In addition to all the fun with the performances and adjudicating, there is a Marketing Contest (lots of categories) for ANY member theatre, a Silent Auction of great theatre items, and everything wraps up at the Brunch with the announcements of winners and those advancing to Regionals.