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Theatre AUM students earn top Kennedy Center honors

a group of people posing for the cameraAUM theatre students earned top honors at the 2024 Region IV Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF).

KCACTF’s annual festival recognizes top performing students in college and university theatre programs. This year’s event was held Feb. 6-10 in Albany, Georgia.

Students recognized with honors at the 2024 KCACTF event:

Tiara Staples. Staples earned first place for Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) Directing Initiative honor, which recognizes one student director from each of KCACTF’s eight regions. Students are invited to participate at the national festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. each April. Tiara has been awarded travel, lodging and per diem expenses, as well as attendance at KCACTF National Festival workshops and performances. In addition, she will receive a one-year associate membership in SDC. AUM student performers in Tiara’s directed scene were Michael James Pritchard and Tara Laurel Little.

a man holding a signa person holding a sign posing for the cameraChason Marvin. Marvin received first place for the Institute for Theatre Journalism and Advocacy (ITJA) award. The honor was established to assist in elevating the level of arts criticism, journalism, and advocacy; and to provide writers the opportunity to grow at the same pace as the artists whose work they review, celebrate, and interpret. At the end of all eight regional festivals, four of the eight regional ITJA awardees will be chosen to attend the National Festival in Washington, D.C. following review of the work they created during their regional festival. Watch his published podcast online.

Tara Laurel Little. Little was named first runner up for the KCACTF/LORT ASPIRE Leadership Fellows Program, which is designed to cultivate a new generation of artistic and administrative leaders for the American Theater.

During the festival, AUM students also participated in stage management, design, and performance events. Students also presented their research and creative works, received external feedback, and participated in experiential opportunities, auditions, and interviews. The conference also featured round table conversations, performances, showcases, new play readings, masterclasses in every discipline, and network opportunities with other students and guest artists.

In addition to mentoring these students, AUM Professor of Theatre Neil David Seibel participated in the Recruiting Fair, auditions and interviews for transfer students. Michael Krek, assistant professor of theatre at AUM, was invited to present a juried conference presentation “The Sustainable Set”.

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