Achieved when I found out back in December 2011 that I was nominated to compete at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in February 2012 - I got nominated to compete as an actor for my performance in BYU's "The Hundred Dresses" last fall! AKA I got a scholarship to take me there and pay my way for lodging + travel expenses + the like! (:
Here's the bright + shining acceptance letter I received:
And the proof that I, indeed, was nominated for what I was nominated for. (:
So I'm sure you're wondering - what is KCACTF? Let me tell you a bit about it and my experience there.
Here's a blurb straight from the KCACTF wesbite:
Started in 1969 by Roger L. Stevens, the Kennedy Center's founding chairman, the Kennedy Center American College Theater (KCACTF) is a national theater program involving 18,000 students from colleges and universities nationwide which has served as a catalyst in improving the quality of college theater in the United States. The KCACTF has grown into a network of more than 600 academic institutions throughout the country, where theater departments and student artists showcase their work and receive outside assessment by KCACTF respondents.
Basically, what this meant for me was that I got to get excused from a week of school and drive 1.5 hours up to beautiful Ogden, UT (so much cooler than the festival being held in Los Angeles like last year, obviously) with a bunch of my fellow BYU theatre kiddos + professors and enjoy a week filled with workshops, shows, keynote speakers (like David Auburn - the playwright of the play Proof - so cool!), and staying up late hanging out in the beautiful Ogden Marriott hotel (for free!).
My favorite part about Weber State? Probably the fact that they have one building on campus just with theatres inside. AKA no music practice rooms or art classrooms - - just theatres. Three of them, all inside. It was so nice to be in a building that was solely dedicated to theatre...without any music/art/dance classrooms or anything inside.
This a picture from the outside of that building: the Browning Center.
So what exactly happened at KCACTF all week long? Here, I'll tell you a bit more:
Through state, regional, and national festivals, KCACTF participants celebrate the creative process, see one another's work, and share experiences and insights within the community of theater artists. The KCACTF honors excellence of overall production and offers student artists individual recognition through awards and scholarships in playwriting, acting, criticism, directing, and design.
Yes, I got to compete in the Irene Ryan Scholarship Auditions. Basically all of the actors nominated (about 1-3 for each college production) were invited to prepare 2 contrasting scenes and a monologue. Everyone participated in the Preliminary Rounds (over 300 students), then 48 moved on to the Semifinal Rounds, and 12 moved on to the Final Round. From BYU alone we had 10 compete in the Preliminaries, 6 compete in the Seminfinals, and 4 BYU students competed in the final round!! I only made it to the preliminary round, but I was so caught up in the rush of everyone else doing so well that it didn't even phase me (hello, Theatre Education major status!); we took home quite a bit of wins overall!
PS there weren't just acting awards handed out (as you'll see) - there were also a handful of dramaturgy + design awards, too!
Overall, it was mega fun and an incredible experience to get to attend KCACTF. The shows I saw were incredible and the talent I saw (and learned from) was outstanding. I highly recommend attending to anyone who gets the chance. (: