LaGuardia Community College Theater Students Earn Accolades at KCACTF Region 1

LaGuardia Community College Theater Students Earn Accolades at KCACTF Region 1

LONG ISLAND CITY, NY (March 5, 2024) — LaGuardia Community College/CUNY Theater students earned accolades at regionals for the 2024 Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF). Each year, KCACTF invites almost 18,000 students from institutions across the country to showcase their theatrical performances, share original work or adaptations of other theatrical performances, and vie for scholarship awards. LaGuardia is in Region 1, one of KCACTF’s eight regions, which includes two- and four-year colleges in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York, and Vermont.

Twenty LaGuardia Theater students traveled to Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Conn. where the 2024 KCACTF Region 1 festival took place from January 30 through February 3. The students showcased their acting and directing skills in individual events, competed for arts leadership scholarships, and put on a performance of the Theater Program’s fall production of Everybody, directed by Professor James Ryan (J.R.) Caldwell. Everybody was one of five invited productions at the festival.

“I could not be prouder of our students for how they performed and conducted themselves at KCACTF Region 1,” said Christopher Weston, director of the LaGuardia Theater Program. “They are continuing our program’s tradition of strong showings at KCACTF, where they hold their own with students from BFA and conservatory programs. With the college’s support, they will continue to show the talent, skill, and drive of community college theater students.”

Three LaGuardia students advanced or won awards.

Jaden Fabio was a semi-finalist for the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) Directing award.

Michael Hernandez won Best Dramatic Monologue and was one of 16 students (out of 180) selected as a regional finalist for an Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship. This spring, Michael will play the lead in Pippin, directed by LaGuardia Theater Professor Stefanie Sertich.

As the Region 1 finalist for the KCACTF/League of Resident Theatres (LORT) ASPIRE Leadership Fellows Program, Juan Rubio will travel to the 2024 American College Theater Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. this April to pitch his proposal for a theatre company to leaders in the field, including Kennedy Center President Deborah F. Rutter, for a chance at a $5,000 scholarship. Juan will be one of 12 students from across the country learning about arts leadership skills.

The week-long fellowship will be taught by Kelvin Dinkins Jr., executive director of the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) at Harvard University, Khady Kamara Nunez, executive director of the Perelman Performing Arts Center (PAC NYC), and Curt Columbus, artistic director of the Trinity Repertory Company and the Brown/Trinity Rep MFA programs in Acting and Directing.

The ASPIRE Arts Leadership Program was co-founded by Professor Sertich. The KCACTF/LORT ASPIRE Leadership Fellows Program is designed to cultivate a new generation of artistic and administrative leaders for the American Theater with a focus of engaging Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and members of other groups that are historically underrepresented in the field.

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LaGuardia Community College (LAGCC), a Hispanic-Serving Institution, located in Long Island City, Queens offers more than 50 degrees and certificates, and more than 65 continuing education programs to educate New Yorkers seeking new skills and careers. As an institution of the City University of New York (CUNY), the College reflects the legacy of our namesake, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, the former NYC mayor beloved for his advocacy of underserved populations. Since 1971, LaGuardia’s academic programs and support services have advanced the socioeconomic mobility of students while providing them with access to a high quality, affordable college education.


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