Feb 1, 2012
 

Spotlight shines on USD students, faculty at regional theatre festival

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Students and faculty from the University of South Dakota Department of Theatre were honored at the Region V Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival in Ames, Iowa, Jan. 15-21.
 

Cody Juttlestad was honored for special effects and his design of a projectile vomit device he created for the comedy, “God of Carnage.” Juttlestad, of Yankton, S.D., received the SPAM Award for National Design Technology and Management. As a recipient of this honor, Juttlestad also receives an all expenses trip to Las Vegas to observe and learn from industry professionals in crafts and properties.

Devon Muko was one of two students who were recognized for “Outstanding Portfolio” in the Portfolio Review competition. Muko is a theatre design/tech major from Rapid City, S.D.

Several students received commendations at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, including Nicholas Amundson of Vermillion for achievement in scenic design; and Ben Kramer of Sioux Falls, S.D. received a commendation for stage management for “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead” and a commendation for scenic design for “Avenue Q.” Graduate student David Mancini of Los Angeles, Calif., received a commendation for achievement in stage direction for “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead”; and the Student Theatre Cooperative’s production of “Evil Dead: The Musical,” received a commendation for achievement in artistic collaboration.

Additionally, for the first time in USD Theatre Department history, five USD students advanced to the semifinals of the regional theatre festival’s acting competition. Kendra Bolan of Lincoln, Neb., Steve Schaeffer of Sioux Falls and their acting partners Lindsay Qualls of Portland, Ore., and Ceci Quintero of Centennial, Colo., advanced to the final round of 16 actors competing for an opportunity to perform at the national finals of the Irene Ryan Acting Competition. Ty Hudson of South Sioux City, Neb., and his scene partner Rachel Heisterkamp of Sioux City, Iowa, and Natalie Polisson of Cedar Lake, Ind., and Jessie Atkinson of Sioux City, Iowa, and their acting partner Tim Huggenberger of Sioux City, Iowa, advanced to the semifinal round of 64 actors competing for a place in the regional finals of the Irene Ryan Acting Competition.

“God of Carnage,” originally performed as part of the USD Department of Theatre 2011-12 Season, Sept. 29 through Oct. 3, was one of five productions – out of nearly 40 competing university productions in the region – invited to perform at the festival, an honor recognizing artistic collaboration and quality of production. “God of Carnage,” a Tony Award-winning comedy, featured cast members Bolan, Cody Strand of Brandon, S.D., Patrick Beasley of Lincoln, Neb., and Emily Dorsett of Sioux City, Iowa. The artistic team included professors Tim Case (scenic), Scribner (costumes), Anthony Pellecchia (lighting), Scott Mollman (technical direction) and Eric Hagen (stage direction). James Hovland, a graduate student from Yankton, S.D., was sound designer.

Faculty members Linda Scribner, associate professor of theatre, and Priscilla Hagen, professor of theatre, were also honored at this year’s festival. Scribner’s costumes for the wedding scenes in “Avenue Q” were showcased in the Costume Parade, an event that featured some of the finest work in the area of costume design, and Hagen received commendation for actor and dialect coaching in “God of Carnage.” Hagen was also a preliminary round judge for the Irene Ryan Acting Competition while Patricia Downey, assistant professor of theatre, was on the festival management team as associate director of Summer Stock Auditions, and Case and Mollman were adjudicators for design/technical portfolios.

The regional festival brought close to 1,700 students from colleges and universities in Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota to Ames to showcase their talents in all areas of theatre. Students also auditioned for summer employment opportunities and attended several workshops throughout the week.

For more information about University Theatre at USD, please visit www.usd.edu/theatre or call (605)
677-5418.

 
About The University of South Dakota
 
Founded in 1862, The University of South Dakota is designated as the only public liberal arts university in the state and is home to a comprehensive College of Arts and Sciences, School of Education, School of Health Sciences, the state's only School of Law, School of Medicine, the accredited Beacom School of Business and the College of Fine Arts. USD has an enrollment of more than 10,000 students taught by more than 400 faculty members. More information is available at www.usd.edu/press/news.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.
 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Phillip Carter
The University of South Dakota
605-677-6258
phillip.carter@usd.edu
 
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