TERRE HAUTE - Indiana State University theater students Karl Barneby, Angela Vitosky, and Jonathon Myers received regional recognition at the Region III Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, in Evansville last month.
Arthur Feinsod, chair of the theater department, is proud of the students' achievement, saying, "the Midwest regional is the largest in the nation with over 14,000 people involved. For ISU to walk away with three writing awards really puts us on the map and is truly a great credit to a school that focuses on play and theatrical writing."
Myers, a theater and communication graduate student, earned first place in the Region III One Act Competition for his play "The Spirit of Eugene V. Debs." Myers' play will be published by Dramatists Play Service and will receive a full production at next year's Region III ACTF. The production will be staged by the ISU theater department sometime in the next year.
"While growing up in Terre Haute, I really didn't know about all this history in my hometown about Eugene V. Debs," says Myers. "My play is about a Midwest father and son, both coal miners, coming back from a Deb's speech and how it impacts their thinking."
Barneby, an emeritus associate professor of English at ISU and now also a student of theater, received honorable mention for his 10-minute play "In Season." He also received a staged reading as one of six plays in the region's 10-minute competition.
"I taught creative writing at ISU but never really wrote any plays. I had been wanting to write for the theater," says Barneby. "It's very difficult to have major character development and change in under 10 minutes."
Theater and communication graduate student Angela Vitosky was one of 16 regional students selected to participate in the intensive critics competition. Her reviews of festival productions earned third place and a cash prize.
The KCACTF is a year-round program in eight geographic regions in the United States. In January and February of each year, regional festivals showcase the finest of each region's entered productions and offer a variety of activities, including workshops, symposia, and regional-level award programs.
Since its inception, KCACTF has given more than 400,000 college theater students the opportunity to have their work critiqued, improve their dramatic skills and receive national recognition for excellence.
More than 16 million theatergoers have attended approximately 10,000 festival productions nationwide.