May 09, 2007
SIUC theater students capture honors
(Editors: Note hometown names.)
CARBONDALE, Ill. — The Department of Theater at Southern Illinois University Carbondale has plenty to brag about this year. Outstanding students recently earned recognition from the department and the College of Liberal Arts, as well as from regional and national theater programs and competitions.
The award-winning students are:
• Thomas Campbell from Arvada, Colo., won the Christian H. Moe Playwriting Award for the best short play at SIUC. He also received an honorable mention under the same award heading for another play. The HB Playwrights Foundation and Theatre in New York City, a venue for original plays, selected his play “dREAMtRIPPIN,” for production this summer.
• Brad Carlson, from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is the winner of the Mordecai Gorelik Award for Excellence in Scenic Design. He also won second place in the Barbizon National Scenic Design Competition for his work with SIUC’s production of “The Crucible” and honorable mention in the Barbizon National Lighting Design for his work in the SIUC production of “Shakespeare’s R & J.”
• Randall Colburn from Rochester Hills, Mich., is a second-year graduate student. He won the Christian H. Moe Playwriting Award for the best long play at SIUC. At the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival for Region Three, he won first place in the 10-minute competition with “Ravishment” and third place in the one-act play competition with “Svetlana.”
• Kenneth Ellis, originally from Philadelphia, Pa., and a past resident of Salisbury, N. C., is the winner of the Shirlene Holms-Ira Aldridge Thespian Award, presented to a black theater major who demonstrates both artistic and academic promise as well as leadership qualities. Ellis, who will pursue his doctorate at SIUC, also earned a Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois Fellowship. The fellowship will pay for his doctoral studies.
• Jennifer Holcombe from Lincoln, Ill., a second year graduate student, won the Outstanding Graduate Student in Theater award. This spring, she was part of a pedagogy discussion at the Mid-America Theater Conference in Minneapolis, Minn.
• Deana Leutkenhaus from St. Joseph, Mo., is the winner of the Eelin Stewart-Harrison Award for Excellence in Costume Design. The award is for a graduating student who demonstrated excellence in costume design. Leutkenhaus also placed second in the Barbizon National Costume Design competition for her work in SIUC’s production of “The Crucible.”
• Craig Ogg, from Chicago, is the winner of the James Moody Award for Excellence in Lighting. This award is given to a graduating student who demonstrated excellence in lighting design. Ogg designed lighting for many SIUC productions, including “The Crucible,” “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” and “Noises Off.”
• Michael Rose, from Minot, N.D., won an honorable mention in the Christian H. Moe Playwriting Award for best long play at SIUC and he participated in the production of “Antarctica” at the prestigious Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival. The HB Playwrights Foundation and Theater in New York City, a venue for original plays, selected his play, “The Deal,” for production this summer.
• Deborah Climo, from Nashville, Tenn., received an Award for Excellence in Technical Production, which reflects demonstrated excellence in that area.
• Laramie Dean from Missoula, Mont., earned recognition for his one-act play, “We Are Not Monsters,” which won second place in the one-act play category at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.
• Thomas Glessner from Waterloo, Ill., won the Archibald McLeod Award for Academic Excellence. He also was a nominee for the competitive Irene Ryan Award at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.
• Kevin Opasinski, originally from Wentzville, Mo., and currently a Carbondale resident, won an Award for Excellence in Technical Production, which recognizes a graduating student for excellence in technical production. He also won a Verizon Theater Scholarship. Opasinski also worked with the Orlando Shakespeare Festival.
• Jason Rost from Montgomery, Ill., received an Award for Excellence in Performance and was a Verizon Scholarship Award winner for the 2006-2007 academic year. He was a nominee for the Irene Ryan Award at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.
Also recognized by the theater department and the College of Liberal Arts were Alicia Scott from Evansville, Ind. with an Outstanding Service Award; Neal Ryan Shaw from Rantoul, Ill., with an Outstanding Service Award; Lenise Lee from Chicago, with a Verizon Scholarship Award for the 2006-2007 academic year; Jordan Vakselis from Palatine, Ill., and John Michael Presney of Rochester, Ill., with nominations for the Irene Ryan Award at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.