2009 Festival Results

Laurel Christian, Starkville Community Theatre and Actor’s Playhouse Advance to SETC

Over 675 theatre enthusiasts from all over the state converged on Natchez, MS this weekend to participate in the 2009 Mississippi Theatre Association’s annual festival and convention. After viewing 10 high school productions, 8 community theatre productions and 10 theatre for youth productions adjudicators made their final decisions and the winners were announced during a luncheon on Sunday at the Natchez Convention Center.

Actors from Starkville Community Theatre’s production of Catfish Moon by Laddy Sartin and Actor’s Playhouse’s production of Rent School Edition by Jonathan Larson both won the Warren McDaniel Best Production Award for the community theatre division. Due to the number of entrants two theatres qualified for the top awards. Best Director, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress went to Starkville’s Kris Lee, Paul Ruff and Krista Vowell. Best Actress went to Aubrey Hays of WINGS Performing Arts and Best Supporting Actor went to Wade Chambers of Delta Center Stage.

Laurel Christian High School took home the Dominic J. Cunetto Award for Best Production with its depiction of All In The Timing by David Ives. Oak Grove High School was selected as Runner-Up for their production of The Honorable Urashima Taro. Chris Wooten was selected as Best Director from Laurel Christian. Best Actor went to Christian Green from Oak Grove, Best Actress to Kayleigh Richardson of Olive Branch.

With their victory, all three productions will advance to the Southeastern Theatre Conference Festival scheduled in Birmingham, AL during March. At SETC, these theatres will compete against the best productions from nine other Southern states. The winner of the community theatre division will advance to the national, American Association of Community Theatre’s festival held in Tacoma, WA.

The winner of the Theatre for Youth Festival was Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College with their production of “Tails of the Singing River”. Other Runner-Up Best Production in the Theatre For Youth Festival went to Actor’s Playhouse’s production of “Alice in Wonderland”. Best Actor and Best Actress went to Black Rose’s Zacary Burton and Annalee Richards.

During 2008 MTA sponsored a playwriting competition for adults and youth. The call for one-act plays resulted in submissions from around the state in both divisions. During the festival Beth Kander of Jackson was awarded a $500 check for her winning one-act play, See Jane Quit, and Kristen Bankston of Biloxi High School was awarded a $250 check for her one-act play Blame the Fool. The two plays were selected after being reviewed by readers around the state and a final adjudication by playwright and novelist Mark Dunn who selected the final winning scripts. During the festival Dunn said that he was very impressed by the young writers and encouraged them to continue writing.

In the high school division, 18 high schools from across Mississippi participated in some aspect of the festival, which included the 10-Minute Play Festival, the Theatre for Youth Festival and the Individual Events Festival. Nine of these schools presented a play for competition.

“We really enjoyed our time in Natchez. While it was certainly colder than we hoped, the people of Natchez Little Theatre and the City of Natchez were very accommodating. We could not have done it without all of the volunteers from the community,” said MTA outgoing president Tom Booth.

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Community Theatre Division Awards

All-Star Cast

Name Theatre Production
Ashley Hawkins Kudzu Playhouse Proof
Jane Allison Just Over the Rainbow A Nice Family Gathering
Haley Sellers Vicksburg Theatre Guild Jenny St. Joan
Dylan Lovett Actor’s Playhouse Rent School Edition
Kate Yost Actor’s Playhouse Rent School Edition
Judd Wilson Tupelo Community Theatre Tuna Christmas
Clint Reed Tupelo Community Theatre Tuna Christmas
Blake Case Actor’s Playhouse Rent School Edition
Hayley Norris Actor’s Playhouse Rent School Edition
Chris Wooten Just Over the Rainbow A Nice Family Gathering
Award Name Theatre Production
Best Ensemble Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Ensemble Vocals WINGS Faust
Best Actor Paul Ruff Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Actress Aubrey Hays WINGS Faust
Best Supporting Actor Wade Chambers Delta Center Stage Lost in the Cosmos
Best supporting Actress Krista Vowell Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Costume Design Tupelo Community Theatre Tuna Christmas
Best Scenic Design Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Overall Technical Excellence Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Director Kris Lee Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Productions Catfish Moon Starkville Community Theatre Catfish Moon
Best Productions Rent School Edition Actor’s Playhouse Rent School Edition

Secondary Division Awards

All Star Cast

Name School Production
Cory Clutter Pearl River Central Cave of the Dragon’s Teeth
Jonathan Necaise Hancock HS Much Ado About Nothing
Kuriakis Glass Louisville HS Marching on to Freedomland
Alex Rodgers Olive Branch HS And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson
Erika Barber Biloxi HS The Gift of Tenyin
Hunter Chancellor Laurel Christian All in the Timing
Austin Seeley Oak Grove HS The Honorable Urashima Taro
George Bennett Starkville HS The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Emma Freundt Jackson Prep All in the Timing
Jamie Riveria Lafayette HS The On Going Meaning of Life
AWARD NAME SCHOOL PRODUCTION
Best Supporting Actress Bailee Brett Laurel Christian All in the Timing
Best Supporting Actor Nate Miranda Olive Branch HS And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson
Best Actress Kayleigh Richardson Olive Branch HS And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson
Best Actor Christian Green Oak Grove HS The Honorable Urashima Taro
Outstanding Vocal Performance Mary Laura Boyette Laurel Christian All in the Timing
Most Promising young Artist George Bennett Starkville HS The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Outstanding Use of Puppetry Oak Grove HS The Honorable Urashima Taro
Most Outstanding Technical Effect Shadow Play by Dark Knights Biloxie The Gift of Tenyin
Best Adaptation of an Original Source Starkville HS The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Outstanding Performance in a Cameo Role Lafayette HS The On Going Meaning of Life
Best Original Play MJ Etua Louisville HS Marching on to Freedomland
Best Ensemble Louisville HS Marching on to Freedomland
Best Costume Design Starkville HS The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Best Scenic Design Biloxi HS The Gift of Tenyin
Overall Technical Excellence Oak Grove HS The Honorable Urashima Taro
Best Director Chris Wooten Laurel Christian All in the Timing
Runner Up Best Production Oak Grove HS The Honorable Urashima Taro
Best Production Laurel Christian All in the Timing

Theatre for Youth Festival

All Star Cast

  • Chloe Rouse
  • Nathan Ford
  • Meagan McBeth
  • Timothy Cooper
  • Lindsey Kelly
  • Dena Hawkins
  • Dylan Stump
  • Rachel Thone
  • Dalton Stanley
  • Jo Gresham
AWARD WINNER PRODUCTION
Best Production Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Perk Players “Tails of the Singing River”
Runner-Up, Best Production Actor’s Playhouse “Alice In Wonderland
Best Actress Zachary Burton, Black Rose Theatre “Counting to Three”
Best Actor Annalee Richards, Black Rose theatre “Counting to Three”
Special Recognition for Costuming “The Timid Dragon”, Pearl River Central High School;
“Alice in Wonderland,” Actor’s Playhouse
Special Recognition for Make-Up “Rikki Tikki Tavi”, Starkville High School

Secondary Individual Events Festival

Female Monologue

Place
Tierra Williams Ridgeland High School 1st
Abbie Cathcart Starkville High School 2nd
Elizabeth Kerlin WINGS 3rd
Danielle Grimes Starkville High School 3rd

Male Monologue

Place
Hal Sullivan Starkville High School 1st
Isiah Quiroz Picayune Memorial High School 2nd
Corbin McDavitt Laurel Christian School 3rd

Musical Female

Place
Jamie Jelinkski Hancock High School 1st
Sarah Beth Sewell Actor’s Anonymous/Starkville 2nd
Mary Anderson Actor’s Playhouse 2nd

Musical Male

Place
Austin Seeley Oak Grove High School 1st
Hunter Chancellor Laurel Christian School 2nd

Duet Acting

Place
Kristen Bankston Biloxi High School 1st
Lucy Thompson Biloxi High School 1st
Danny McCollough Ridgeland High School 2nd
Tierra Williams Ridgeland High School 2nd
Ashlyn Watts Picayune Memorial High School 3rd
Taylor Wagner Picayune Memorial High School 3rd

Duet Musical

Place
Brandon Campbell WINGS 1st
Michaela Moore WINGS 1st
Hunter Chancellor Laurel Christan School 2nd
Mary Laura Boyett Laurel Christan School 2nd
Dylan Lovett ACTORS’ PLAYHOUSE 3rd
Hayley Norris ACTOR’S PLAYHOUSE 3rd

Original Student Written/Scene Performance

Place
Cooper Kennard Starkville High School 1st
Hillary Stump Pearl River Central High School 2nd
Tristan Summers Hancock High School 3rd

Scene Acting

Place
Christian Green Oak Grove High School 1st
Logan Little Oak Grove High School 1st
Noel Anderson Oak Grove High School 1st
Haley Jones Pearl River Central High School 2nd
Hana Mitchell Pearl River Central High School 2nd
Keagan Johnson Pearl River Central High School 2nd
Kristen Bankston Biloxi High School 3rd
Shay Lawson Biloxi High School 3rd
Brian Rosetti Biloxi High School 3rd

Costume Design

Place
Kristen Zumbro Oak Grove High School 1st
Kayleigh Webb Purvis High School 2nd
Chrissy Carter Hancock High School 3rd

Scene Design

Place
Andrea Shearon Oak Grove High School 1st
Felicia Mitchell Pearl River Central High School 2nd
Katie Miller WINGS 3rd

Poster

Place
Terry Smith Purvis High School 1st
Chris Permenter Oak Grove High School 2nd
Alicia Matlock Oak Grove High School 3rd

10-Minute Play Festival

All Star Cast Cory Clutter Pearl River Central High School
All Star Cast Alex Hendry Laurel Christian School
All Star Cast Adam Rouse Purvis High School
All Star Cast Katie Hatcher Hernando High School
All Star Cast Brandon McAninch Hernando High School
All Star Cast Ricky Wormer Pearl River Central High School
Best Tech for a Comedy Amdana Blair Greene County Final Vacation
Best Tech for a Drama Justin Locklear Picayune High School Chicago Lights
Best Director of a Comedy Kirsten Taylor Purvis High School Cokes in the Tundra
Best Director of a Drama Matthew Germenis Picayune High School Paradise Lost Revisted
Best Ensemble Cokes in the Tundra
Best Actress in a Comedy Amanda McKay Pearl River Central High School
Best Actress in a Drama Maureen Hughes Starkville High School Paradise Lost Revisted
Best Play – Comedy Cokes in the Tundra
Best Play – Drama Chicago Lights
Best Overall Playwright Tristan Summers Hancock High School Paradise Lost Revisted

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