Monday, August 17, 2020

WINNERS: stage directors (theater/music theater), the Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20

Charles Nelson Reilly

The American Prize wishes everyone safety and health during this difficult time.
 

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, David (Volosin) Katz, founder and chief judge, is honored to announce the winners, runners-up, and honorable mention recipient of The American Prize in Directing—The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, 2019-20, in the theater/musical theater division. (Opera division winners will be posted separately.) Congratulations!

Complete listings of finalists and semi-finalists in The American Prize competitions may be found elsewhere on this blog. Please use the chronological tool in the right-hand column to find specific results.

QUICKNOTES: Although The American Prize does not usually provide written evaluations to semi-finalists, some semi-finalist composers will receive in their certificate packets short comments, suggestions or overall impressions made during the judging. We hope they will prove valuable. All finalists receive written evaluations from a member of The American Prize judging panel.

Charles Nelson Reilly was a Tony Award-winning actor and Broadway stage director, and an acclaimed opera director and teacher. Far more than the zany television personality by which he was most often identified, Reilly nurtured the creation of a whole series of unique one-person stage plays. Most famously, he directed Julie Harris in her Tony Award-winning star turn in "The Belle of Amherst", on the life and poetry of Emily Dickinson. Among Reilly's many Broadway directing credits were Ira Levinʼs "Break a Leg", Larry Shueʼs "The Nerd", and the revival of "The Gin Game", starring Julie Harris and Charles Durning, for which Mr. Reilly was the sole American director to be nominated for a Tony in 1997. Mr. Reillyʼs career as an opera director included productions for Chicago Opera Theater, Dallas Opera, San Diego Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Toledo Opera, Milwaukee Opera and Opera Pacific. Charles Nelson Reilly and The American Prize chief judge David Katz were friends for three decades, first meeting through their mutual Hartford voice teacher, Mrs. Friedrich Schorr. Mr. Reilly served as honorary chairperson of the Friedrich Schorr Memorial Performance Prize in Voice from the competition's founding in 1990, until his death. To read more about the career of Charles Nelson Reilly, .

COVID EXTENSIONS: Because of the current national and international situation, many rules have been changed and requirements eased to make it easier to apply for The American Prize 2020-21. In addition, application deadlines have been extended. We will accept applications from COMPOSERS, CLASSICAL VOCALISTS, PIANISTS, CHAMBER ENSEMBLES and INSTRUMENTAL SOLOISTS postmarked or emailed by Wednesday, October 14, 2020. Applications from CONDUCTORS, STAGE DIRECTORS, CONDUCTED ENSEMBLES, ARTS ADMINISTRATORS (arts marketing, arts education) and in the performance of American Music (BACON AWARD) will be accepted until Wednesday, October 14, 2020. Further extensions may be granted pending the most current information about the virus. 


Please make us aware of any misprints: theamericanprize@gmail.com

The American Prize in Directing—The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, theater/music theater division, 2019-20

The American Prize winner:
Belinda Andrews-Smith        
Denison University 
Granville OH         
Chicago        

Belinda Andrews-Smith        
Dr. Belinda Andrews-Smith is the Director of Opera/Music Theatre and the Coordinator of Vocal Studies at Denison University.  Belinda joined the Denison music faculty in 1998. During her twenty years of service to the University, she has directed over 40 productions of music theatre, opera, and operetta. Singer's Theatre, the theatrical ensemble created by Dr. Andrews-Smith at Denison, has become an extension of her vocal and theatre training, connecting the voice studio to the stage. Her mastery of commercial and classical singing techniques and opera performance has created a unique method of theatrical direction. Dr. Andrews-Smith’s productions are extremely popular and have become "standing room only" events on the Denison University campus. In 2019 Singer's Theatre Workshop was nationally recognized, winning third place in The American Prize competition and Dr. Smith won second place in the directing category. Students trained in her distinctive music program have applied their undergraduate theatrical instruction to graduate programs throughout the United States, leading roles on Broadway, and National Broadway tours.

 
2nd Place:
Geoffrey Arndt
Saint Patrick Summer Theatre           
Chicago  IL       
Sweeney Todd

Geoffrey Arndt
Geoffrey is a teacher, director, and interdisciplinary artist from Chicago. He has served for twelve years as the Director of Theatre at Saint Patrick High School and runs the Saint Patrick Summer Theatre Company that supports students, community members, and professional actors through workshops, intensives, classes, and a summer musical. He has directed over forty productions in community and educational settings. Some of his favorites include Man of La Mancha, Amadeus, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Pippin, Phantom of the Opera, Dracula, Macbeth, and Robin Hood. Geoffrey has also adapted and devised works for the stage as well as designed and fabricated puppets for production, as well. He is currently pursuing his Master of Fine Arts in Directing through the University of Idaho. www.geoffreyarndt.com


3rd Place (there was a tie):
Dr Darren P. Lawson
Bob Jones University
Greenville SC         
Titanic: The Musical  

Dr Darren P. Lawson
Dr. Darren P. Lawson is dean of the School of Fine Arts and Communication at Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC. He has a BA in Rhetoric and Public Address and an MA in Platform Arts from Bob Jones University and PhD in Communication Studies from the University of Kansas. He is a member of the University Classic Players and has portrayed such roles as Cyrano in Cyrano de Bergerac, Leontes in The Winter’s Tale, Gloucester in King Lear, Henry in King Henry IV, Duke of Buckingham in Richard III: The Terrible Reign, Bottom the Weaver in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Macduff in Macbeth, Jaques in As You Like It, Feste in Twelfth Night, and others. He stage directs for the BJU Opera Association with productions including Titanic: The Musical, Little Women: The Broadway Musical, Aida, Samson et Dalila, Andrea Chenier, Mefistofele, L’Elisir d’Amore, Rigoletto, Il Trovatore, and Simeon. http://www.bju.edu/events/fine-arts/concert-opera-drama/archive/


3rd Place (there was a tie):
David Schwingle           
Bob Jones University
Greenville SC   
King Lear

David Schwingle            
As a voice and acting coach (RRT), playwright, director, and actor, David regularly creates new plays and acts in Shakespeare’s.

In 2015, David's short play, Separate, was produced at Tesseract Theatre in St. Louis, Missouri (April 17-25). In 2016, David’s 10-minute play, The Match, was produced in September (Roanoke, VA).

In April, 2017, David's 10-minute play Winning with Shakespeare! won the new works festival at the Atlantic Stage (Myrtle Beach, SC).

David is the founder of 11th Hour Theatre. He recently finished playing Hamlet. (Greenville, SC). He recently completed the Patsy Rodenburg voice and acting Certification program (RRT) housed at the Michael Howard Studios in NYC. He recently directed King Lear in Greenville, SC.


Finalist Honorable Mention:
Geoffrey Arndt
Saint Patrick High School      
Chicago  IL       
We All Rise Above—an anti-bullying play devised and directed by Mr. Arndt with the students at Saint Patrick High School

Geoffrey Arndt
Geoffrey is a teacher, director, and interdisciplinary artist from Chicago. He has served for twelve years as the Director of Theatre at Saint Patrick High School and runs the Saint Patrick Summer Theatre Company that supports students, community members, and professional actors through workshops, intensives, classes, and a summer musical. He has directed over forty productions in community and educational settings. Some of his favorites include Man of La Mancha, Amadeus, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Pippin, Phantom of the Opera, Dracula, Macbeth, and Robin Hood. Geoffrey has also adapted and devised works for the stage as well as designed and fabricated puppets for production, as well. He is currently pursuing his Master of Fine Arts in Directing through the University of Idaho. www.geoffreyarndt.com

 
*** 
Congratulations!

No comments:

Post a Comment