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Theatre Department Earns High Marks at American College Theatre Festival

Belmont’s Department of Theatre and Dance recently participated in The Kennedy Center’s 2016 American College Theatre Festival 48 (KCACTF) Region IV with their production of Alice, an original adaption of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland by theatre major Ara Vito.

KCACTF is a national theater program involving students from colleges and universities nationwide. More than 1,300 productions and 200,000 college students from across the country participate in the annual festival. Belmont was one of six colleges in the southeast region selected to participate in the festival recently held in Charleston, South Carolina.

Alice Cast (2)Vito received the highest recognition for playwriting with the Region IV National Partners to the American Theatre Award. This award is given for the best-written, best-crafted script, with the strongest writer’s “voice.”  The final award recipient will be selected by a reading panel named by the National Partners of the American Theatre, and winners will be announced at the KCACTF National Festival in April.

Students Austin Williams and Morgan Conder were selected to participate in the Irene Ryan Acting Competition.  Kyle Odum received an honorable mention in the sound design category.  The cast and crew of Alice also received the Golden Hardhat Award for the most professional load-in/out and technical process among the universities performing at the festival. Further recognition was given to Assistant Professor and Chair of the Theatre and Dance Department Paul Gatrell for “Excellence in Design” and Associate Professor of Theatre and Dance Brent Maddox for “Excellence in Direction.”

Alice was developed through a process grounded in ensemble and collaboration and fulfilled Belmont’s senior capstone requirement for the writer and seven actor ensemble including Williams, Conder, Madeline Marconi, Nyazia Martin, Johnna McCarthy, Caitlyn Weaver and Kristen Ladd. This capstone is the culminating experience of their theatre training.

The student designers for Alice included Maggie Jackson for lights, Sam Lowry for projections, Caroline Knott for costumes and Kyle Odum for sound. The technical team for the KCACTF Region IV production consisted of JB Bridge, Taylor Thomas, Amanda Bell, Jake Wallace, Andrew Timms and the theatre department’s Technical Director Jerry Stratton.

For Alice’s full review at KCACTF, click here.

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