Rules and Guidelines

Start and End of Semester Cleanups

  • At the start and end of each semester, a Zoo Cleanup is organized to keep the space clean and running smoothly.
  • 700s and 500s must participate or risk failing their class.
  • Not a 700? You are still required to be there.

Basic Zoo Rules

  • No live animals.
  • Water and fire should be discussed with the Zoo Keeper ( and Costume Department’s Mira Veikley (
  • No drinking in the Zoo.
  • Smoking is never allowed in the Zoo. The Zoo is located in a residential building. There is nothing we can do to change this rule.
  • Do not hang lights on the fire sprinklers or hammer beams. We understand that lighting the Zoo can be a puzzle, but for the good of the equipment and the structure of the building, this is never an option.
  • Do not take furniture or other items from ANY lounge or common space. This includes the Hepburn Lounge downstairs.
  • The back hallway and hallway downstairs next to the stairs must be kept clear at all times. NOTHING may be stored in these spaces. This is a fire safety regulation. The Zoo can be shut down if this is not followed.
  • When the risers are set up, there can be no more than 7 chairs to an aisle. This is a fire safety regulation.
  • *** While COVID-19 is still a reality, Zoo capacity is capped at 60 including cast and crew. Number is subject to change as the condition of the pandemic changes. Please reach out to the Zoo Keeper (kaschwartz@middlebury) and the Box Office ( for more information. ***
    The Zoo room capacity is 90 and assumes the use of 7 risers with 44 chairs, with other seating provided on the floor and keeping all aisles and exits clear. A crew/cast of up to 12 is allowed in the booth and backstage areas in addition to the audience. If you have a crew larger than 12, your overall capacity decreases accordingly. (e.g. If you have a 13-person cast and crew, your seating capacity is 89. 14 people? Capacity is 88. etc.) We cannot go over this capacity or we will be shut down.
  • At least one fire exit needs to be clear and visible.

Cleanliness is next to Godliness

  • Painting needs to be done outside or in the Zoo, not in the stairwells.
  • Custodial walks through the Zoo often to make sure it is in decent condition. The Zoo doesn’t have to be spotless, but it needs to be walkable.
  • If you have props that are iffy (e.g. alcohol bottles or herbal cigarettes) please mark them as props so that custodial does not throw them away/think we are going wild. You can also store them out of sight.
  • The Zoo needs to be locked every night to keep valuables (such as tools and technology) safe. This includes back doors, front door, and the paint room.
  • Being given keys to the Zoo is a privilege. Abusing this privilege (such as hosting parties in the Zoo) results in immediate suspension for future use and possible fines.
  • Keep the adjoined rooms clean as well (paint closet, tool room, and storage closet).

Zoo Assets

  • The Zoo provides only enough black paint to repaint the floor after each show. If you paint the walls, you must paint them back to black at load out with paint FROM YOUR BUDGET. Plan accordingly.
  • There are black curtains in the Zoo, but if you still need more, get in touch with Allison Rimmer (
  • The Zoo has some wood, but not much. Do not count on Zoo wood supplies to build. However do take a look at the Zoo supplies before buying your own.

Zoo Lighting Instruments, Paints, Hardware, and Tools
To be provided.

Very Important

Your event must have a Middlebury College registered Crowd Manager. If you need help finding one, reach out to the Box Office ( You will NOT get keys to the Zoo until you give the Zoo Keeper the name(s) of your crowd manager(s).

Show Nights

  • Put up and take down signs every night saying that there is a show in progress. Sample sign:
  • You cannot kick anyone out of the lounge unless they are watching TV during show times (not rehearsals).
  • Change in the back room of the Zoo, or in the lounge. If you are using the lounge, be decent. It’s a common space, and we will respect that.
  • Close the door and put a sign on the kitchen.
  • If you borrow one of the tables from the lounge for house management, it needs to go back that night! You cannot borrow lounge furniture for the shows.

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