A scene from Becky's New Car with text "News"


Emily Nash

UI Theatre Student Wins In National KCACTF Competition

Emily Nash (right), of La Grande, Ore., and her scene partner Brian Demar Jones of New York City, participated in the prestigious Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in Washington D.C. in April, with Nash receiving the National Classical Acting Award and an invitation to the Shaw Festival in Canada.

Nash and Jones are both Master of Fine Arts candidates in the Theatre Arts Performance Program at the University of Idaho.

In March, Nash was named the 2014 Irene Ryan Region 7 award recipient, selected from a field of 250 preliminary candidates. The Irene Ryan Acting Competition is considered the ultimate college level acting award.

In addition, Jones won the regional Musical Theatre Scholarship for his rendition of “There's a Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon for New York” from “Porgy & Bess.“

Denver native Micheal Smith, a first-year transfer student from Community College of Denver, was selected as a cast member for the National New Play Network from July 26 – Aug. 3. Smith was one of only two non-equity artists chosen nationally to serve as part of an ensemble of 10 actors and new play readers.

Ghost of Christmas PastOther UI theatre arts students took home regional prizes including:

MFA candidate Courtney Smith, of Bellingham, Wash., won a Meritorious Award for his scenic design of “Ordinary Time.”
Bachelor of Fine Arts candidate Codey Butler, of Boise, Idaho, won a Meritorious Award for his stage management of “Ordinary Time.”

BFA candidate Max Holley, of Lewiston, Idaho, won a Meritorious Award for his Ghost of Christmas Future “gown & crown” creation in the Allied Crafts / Costumes category for “A Christmas Carol.” (left)

Jeff Peterson’s play, “An Elaborate System Ropes & Pulleys” was presented as a reading at the regional ‘non-produced’ full-length play reading. Jeff is a 2013 MFA winter graduate and his play received a certificate of excellence from the national selection team.

A total of 49 UI theatre arts students and three faculty members participated in the KCACTF Region 7 event, which featured workshops, presentations, and performance directing, design and playwriting competitions.

Region VII encompasses the states of Alaska, Arizona, Northern California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. More than 1,200 students, faculty, national judges and VIP guests attended the event.