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CLC Theatre students win accolades at regional theatre festival

by Public Relations and Marketing | Published Mar 01, 2021

Fifteen College of Lake County (CLC) theatre students participated in the 53rd annual Region III Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) to kick off their 2021.  Among the group, 12 were first-time festival attendees, one performed in the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship Auditions and two threw themselves into Design Storm; a project where directors, designers and dramaturgs from different schools team-up to create the production of their dreams in a timed event. 

2 As You Like“The KCACTF is the largest organization of its kind dedicated to encouraging, recognizing and celebrating the finest and most diverse work produced in university and college theatre programs,” said CLC Theatre Program Chair Craig Rich. “The awards celebration recognized achievements of festival participants from all KCACTF programs throughout the year. Two of our CLC theatre students received recognition for their achievement at the festival, while our productions from the 2020 season garnered seven certificates of merit.”

Photo: the cast of As You Like It, a production performed prior to the pandemic

Both achievements at the festival came from its Design Storm event: Lucero Martinez, from Gurnee, was a recipient for sound design with team “A Doll's House,” while Amanda Bachinger, from Lindenhurst, received an honorable mention for dramaturg with team "Dracula." 

3 Poe CatThe certificates of merit were given for CLC’s spring 2020 production of “As You Like It” and fall 2020 production of “Twisted Tales of Poe.” The awards honor truly exceptional production contributions worthy of special recognition. Mike Dvorak from Long Grove, Martinez, Owen Skarbalus from Lindenhurst, Jack Thompson from Lake Zurich and Jeffrey Weiss from Zion were recognized for “excellence in original music” for the spring production. Meanwhile Martinez, Thompson and Weiss were also recognized for “music and foley artistry” for the fall production.

Photos: screenshots from The Twisted Tales of Poe, a production performed virtually

1 PoeKCACTF Region III is made up of colleges and universities from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. Though this year’s festival was virtual, participants still had the opportunity to view productions selected from among the best in the region, participate in a variety of workshops, interact with professional theatre artists, network with faculty and students from other schools and compete for scholarships and other professional opportunities in a variety of categories. Next year’s festival is already set to take place Jan. 4-9 at Ball State University.   

“Giving our students opportunities to attend professional development and networking events can make the difference in preparing them to enter careers,” said Rich. “Encouraging and supporting participation is a staple of our program and will continue to be long into the future.” 

About College of Lake County: 

College of Lake County is a comprehensive community college committed to equitable high-quality education, cultural enrichment and partnerships to advance the diverse communities it serves in northeastern Illinois. Offered at three campuses in Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan or online, college classes are affordable and accessible to help each student achieve academic, career and personal goals. More than 70,000 students graduated with degrees and certificates since the college opened in 1969. The College of Lake County is the only higher-education institution ranked among the top 15 best places to work in Illinois by Forbes and is a national leader in many areas, including sustainability and conservation.