Gallery - Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival Region III 2009
"KCACTF III Festival XLI" was held January 6-10 in Saginaw, Michigan.
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Nicole Kirsch is a finalist for Regional Design Projects. Nicole is a sophomore majoring in Audio Production and Technology.
Nicole and José are finalists for Sound Design Excellence. Nicole wins Second Place and José wins First Place.
José Cordero-Medina is a finalist for Regional Design Projects. José is a senior majoring in Sound Design.
American College Theatre Festival
José Cordero-Medina (senior, Sound Design) won first place and Nicole Kirsch (sophomore, Audio Production and Technology) won second in Design Projects at this year's Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival for Region III, held at Saginaw Valley State University January 5-10. Twenty-six Michigan Tech students and six faculty attended Region III's five-day intensive session of displays, contests, workshops and performances which brought together students and faculty from theatre programs in a five-state area.
José's first place project involved an innovative sound design for the classic tragedy "Dr. Faustus" by Christopher Marlowe. Nicole designed sound featuring Native American music and instruments for a modern comedy, "Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth" by Drew Hayden Taylor.
The competition among student designers is fierce, since it's open to students from so many programs, large and small. The judges are faculty members from other regions chosen by KC/ACTF.
In addition to the sound design awards, MTU senior Corinne Gilbert (Theatre and Entertainment Technology) placed third in the "Realized Designs" competition for the set of "The Memorandum," built in McArdle Theatre in Spring 2008 for Michigan Tech's production of the Vaclav Havel play. Mike McKellar (senior, Entertainment Design and Technology) got rave reviews for his lizard costume for this fall's production of Edward Albee's "Seascape.” First Place in the annual "Design Storm" competition went to a team including MTU senior Kyle Van Howe (Sound Design).
"The KC/ACTF Festival puts our students among their peers from some of the best programs in the country, so it's an exciting and very affirming experience," Patricia Helsel (assistant professor, Visual and Performing Arts) commented. " Michigan Tech students really do stand out for their creativity, skill, and great common sense, and they also learn so much from a week of non-stop theatre performances, hands-on demos, and theatre talk." The faculty—Helsel, M.C. Friedrich, Roger Held, Dennis Kerwin, Kalen Larson, and Christopher Plummer—presented workshops including an interactive demonstration of the "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" series, the innovative project which introduces first year sound design students to McArdle Theatre each fall.
Designs for all four of this year's MTU theatre productions are entered in KC/ACTF competitions. Faculty judges come to Houghton to see each production and meet with designers, cast and crew members to evaluate their work. (Michigan Tech's faculty visit other schools to provide the same service.) Ultimately, a few plays and designs are selected from the eleven regions to be displayed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., at a national festival and award ceremony celebrating the vitality of college theatre in America.
by Karen Snyder, January 13, 2009
Images © 2009 Department of Visual and Performing Arts, Michigan Technological University. All rights reserved.