Mission : The Fullerton Children's Repertory Theater was founded in 1983 with the goal of providing North Orange County children an opportunity to experience American musical theater by actually performing in some of the most famous shows this medium has produced. Each summer and winter a Broadway show is produced by the two directors, Vicki Schindele and Alberta Strey, with children playing all the roles, and former members, now teenagers, acting as the technical crew. Membership in the company is by audition, with permanent status obtained after one show. Students are eligible for member ship when they are in the fifth grade and remain eligible through the summer following eighth grade. In true repertory spirit, they "play" together until they graduate from the company. Approximately fifty members participate in each show. Productions run for 3 week-ends, with a minimum of eight performances. A unique aspect of FCRT's productions is that all students are assigned lines and parts rather than some merely being part of a chorus. In addition, major roles are double cast in order to give more members the opportunity to grow in their abilities and to make important contributions to the libretto. All students, when "out of cast," become members of the ensemble, so that they learn how to support their peers.
In addition to presenting two Broadway musicals per year, the group also entertains for local community organizations; and every third summer, the troupe travels to perform a musical revue of American Broadway song and dance. In 1985, FCRT traveled to Shizuoka, Japan, to participate in the Third Annual International Youth Musicale. In 1988, the company sang and danced at the International French Musicale in Annecy, France. in 1990, Rep members performed in Scandinavia, including a performance before the American ambassador to Sweden. During the summer of 1992, members performed in New Zealand and Australia in 1995, they toured and sang in Germany and Austria. In 1998, FCRT had performances in England and Scotland. During the summer of 2001, the company performed their Broadway Revue in France, Switzerland, Austria and Germany. The most recent tour in 2004 concluded with thirty members performing in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and the Czech Republic.
The Repertory company is truly a family experience, with parents participating in many supportive ways. It is also an ongoing growth experience for its members, as they develop show to show. Auditions are therefore not for an individual production, but rather for the company itself.