MCC Theatre Readies for Regional Kennedy Center Competition

MESA, Ariz. – Mesa Community College’s Theatre and Film Arts Department will compete in Region VIII of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in Los Angeles on February 11-15, at the Los Angeles Theatre Center and Millennium Biltmore Hotel. Students will test their talents in a vast array of theatre specialties including acting, all design areas, and stage management. 550 colleges compete nationally in KCACTF, with approximately 55 competing in Region VIII. Approximately 35 of the colleges in Region VIII are four-year schools with the remaining being two-year institutions. Many of the four-year schools have graduate programs, and graduate students compete under KCACTF rules. All competitions are head-to-head, regardless of the scope of the institution.

Design students were nominated for the Region VIII competition by being adjudicated from a group of local, professional, theatre design respondents. Students were selected from two participating MCC productions, East of the Sun and West of the Moon and Boeing Boeing. MCC design students selected from East of the Sun and West of the Moon include Jessica Thompson, Sound Design and Lindsey Halfhill, Costume Design. Boeing Boeing design nominees are Tyler Scrivener, Scenic Design; Andres Marin, Costume Design; Zackary Diepstraten, Sound Design; and, Farah Lourie, Properties Design. Additionally, Linda Baxter will compete in Stage Management from Boeing Boeing.

Five MCC students and their scene partners will also match their acting talents against the competition in the Irene Ryan Scholarship Auditions as follows: Nathaniel Lewis/Jonathan Manno, partner; Janae Dunn/Thomas McCoy, partner; Marissa Salazar/Jared Valin, partner; Dolores Mendoza/Raijene Rodriguez, partner; and, Roman Sanchez/Elizabeth Gunnell, partner. 300 students total will compete for honors after being selected for outstanding acting by outside adjudicators at their respective institutions.

It is expected that many of the MCC actors will also audition for roles in the New Play Project, which are staged readings of new plays, providing the students the opportunity to work with playwrights and the ability to network with faculty and students from other colleges.

Actors will also audition for acting conservatories and professional theatre companies in the Next Step Auditions. MCC Theatre & Film Arts students have earned numerous paid acting jobs in the past, so anticipation among the actors runs high.

Kevin Dressler coached the student actors. All Design and Technology students are coached by Kara Thomson, Head of Design & Production; Mallory Prucha, Faculty Designer and Costume Shop Supervisor, Chris Tubilewicz, Coordinator of Performing Arts; and Troy Buckey, Technical Theatre Coordinator. Brian Daily, Scene Shop Foreman always facilitates many student designers as well.

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About Mesa Community College
Mesa Community College provides outstanding transfer and career and technical programs, workforce development, and life-long learning opportunities to residents of the East Valley area of Phoenix, Arizona. MCC excels in teaching, learning and empowering its more than 40,000 students who attend annually to succeed in a local and global community.  Mesa Community College is one of ten colleges that comprise the Maricopa County Community College District. For additional information please visit Follow these links to learn more about MCC’s Communication and Theatre & Film Arts programs.

Contact:  Kevin Dressler, Director of Theatre Activities, 480-461-7538,

The Maricopa County Community College District is an EEO/AA institution and an equal opportunity employer of protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.

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Publication Date: 
Friday, January 31, 2014