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Theater and dance

Titans Win Top Acting Spots at Theater Fest
by Gail Matsunaga


April 10, 2003 :: No. 194

sarah Petty and Jason McBeath
Theatre and dance students Sarah Petty and Jason McBeath are going to Washington, D.C. to compete against other top college actors from across the country at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival April 14-20 in Washington, D.C.

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Each year, student actors take the stage at regional Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festivals across the country, vying for the two top finalist spots in each of the eight regions.

Titans Jason McBeath and Sarah Petty captured those honors as winners of the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship during the Region VIII festival at Utah State University in Logan.

That both finalists are from the same university is rare. This is the second time that Cal State Fullerton has achieved that distinction, and it may be the first university to do so.

McBeath and Petty, along with their scene partners - Annie DiMartino and Jarred Kjack - will travel to Washington, D.C., all expenses paid, to take part in an “Evening of Scenes” during the April 14-20 KCACTF national festival. Along with 14 students representing the other seven regions, they will compete for two $2,500 scholarships.

“It's an incredible honor, and I'm looking forward to doing the same thing in Wash-ington, D.C.,” says McBeath. “I felt very passionate about the two pieces I performed at the regional. I got a lot of support from faculty members, who had a lot to do with my winning because they had as much to do with crafting the pieces.”

Says Petty, “I feel honored and am so excited. I can't wait - to be able to go to Washington, D.C., and see what kinds of theater others are bringing from other parts of the country. And the faculty at Cal State Fullerton are phenomenal. They're so supportive and always available for coaching, even at the last minute during the regional competition.”

“It's great for them to see the value of the training they get and to see, on a regional and national level, what the competition is like.”

For her work opposite McBeath, DiMartino received the Best Irene Ryan Partner honor. Students Gilbert E. Garcia, Aaron Gordon, Keola Simpson and Ryan Tasker were named Irene Ryan finalists, while Gregory Joseph Allen, Leona Britton, Jonathan Schoen- herz, Brad Standley and Christine Terrisse earned Irene Ryan semi-finalist honors.

In the design categories, Fullerton students captured a number of Region VIII awards: Corinne Carillo, sound (“A Bright Room Called Day”); Marcie Flores and Joy Shannon, make-up (“Chess”); Steven Giltner, set design (“A Bright Room Called Day”); and Nathan Jones, lighting (“A Bright Room Called Day”).

Additionally, several students won scholarships to the CSU Summer Arts Program: Matt Connelly, Second City Scholarship; Michele Jones and Nathan Jones, lighting scholarships; and Rebecca Wright, Shakespeare & Company Scholar- ship.

“The kids are terrific and it's so wonderful to see them recognized for their talent,” says Susan Hallman, chair and professor of theatre and dance. “It's great for them to see the value of the training they get and to see, on a regional and national level, what the competition is like.”

Media Contacts: Jim Volz, professor of theatre and dance, 657-278-3538 or jvolz@fullerton.edu
Gail Matsunaga, Public Affairs, 657-278-4851 or gmatsunaga@fullerton.edu

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