Southeastern students receive accolades at Kennedy Center Festival


Thursday, March 15, 2018 
by: Tonya Lowentritt 


     HAMMOND – Two Southeastern Louisiana University students will soon work with prominent theater professionals during one-week intensive master classes in Washington D.C. thanks to awards they garnered at the recent Region 6 Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF).
     Matt Doyle of Mandeville received two awards - the Barbizon Award for Excellence in Sound Design and the Stagecraft Institute of Las Vegas (SILV) Award for Excellence. Doyle competed with his sound design for “She Kills Monsters.” Miranda Miller of Walker also received the SILV Award for Excellence for her assistant sound design work in “She Kills Monsters.”
     “As a finalist for Excellence in Sound Design, Matt has been invited to attend the KCACTF National Festival in Washington, D.C., where he will present his work and spend a week studying design with some of the best in the business,” said Associate Professor of Theatre Jim Winter.
     Winter explained that SILV has partnered with KCACTF to award students from each region a one-week master class in Las Vegas in a concentration of their choice. Both Doyle and Miller will receive this opportunity, he said.
     “Classes include computer drafting, computer modeling, rigging, automation, props and SFX, sound, makeup and masks, wigs, lighting technology, patterning, projections and video, and moving lights,” he said. “Each award includes a full tuition grant, housing, daily breakfast and lunch.”
     Fourteen Southeastern students traveled with three faculty members to Angelo State University in San Angelo, Tex. to compete in a variety of categories in performance, directing and design, and technology against colleges and universities from Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas.
     “She Kills Monsters,” was once again in the festival spotlight when Southeastern faculty Jeff Mickey and Steve Schepker presented a session called “We Killed Monsters.” The session demonstrated the collaboration between a student designer and faculty advisors fabricating weapons for the production.
     Other Southeastern students recognized at the festival included Jordin Alaina Jones of Harvey. Jones was recognized as an Irene Ryan Finalist in acting. She auditioned and competed with 168 actors from across the region.
     “Jordin made the cut to 32 actors and then made the cut to 16,” Winter said. “Since 1995, Southeastern has had a handful of actors make the first cut, but this is the first time we’ve had an actor make the second cut.”
     Sarah Balli of Covington was recognized as an SDC Directing Initiative Finalist. Balli competed with nine other directors and was named a finalist for her direction of “Milk Like Sugar” by Kristen Greenridge. Winter said Southeastern Theatre has never competed in this category.
     Ariana Robinson of Prairieville was named a Music Theatre Initiative Dance Finalist. She is the first Southeastern Theatre student to receive the distinction.
     “This was one of our most successful years at the KCACTF Regional Festival,” Winter said. “I am incredibly proud of how admirably our students represented our university and our theater program.”

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