4th Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition Launches Tonight, 5/7
Jujamcyn Theaters (Jordan Roth, President) and True Colors Theatre Company (Kenny Leon, Co-Founding Artistic Director) previously announced the 4th Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition, to take place tonight, May 7th at 7:00 p.m. at the August Wilson Theatre (245 West 52nd Street). The event, which is free and open to the public, features high school students from Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Pittsburgh and Seattle performing monologues by the late, legendary American playwright.
Judges for the 2012 Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition will include Cyristan Dickinson (actress), Lynn Nottage(playwright), Jasmine Guy (actress, singer, and dancer), James A. Williams (actor), and David Gallo (scenic designer). The evening will feature a performance from Wilson’s Gem of the Ocean by Phylicia and Condola Rashad.
Founded in 2007, the Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition aims to expose a new generation of creative minds to the life’s work and artistic legacy of this seminal American playwright. Program participants in cities across the country encounter Wilson’s ten-play cycle and receive coaching from teaching artists as they prepare their monologues for local, city-wide and national competitions.
This year's competition will afford students from these cities around the country the opportunity to attend Clybourne Park on Broadway and meet the cast, work closely with two of Wilson’s closest collaborators: director Kenny Leon and dramaturg Todd Kreidler, and explore popular Manhattan attractions before making their Broadway stage debuts. This year, a semifinal round will take place at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center (part of the Borough Manhattan Community College) The three finalists from each regional city will compete, and the top contestants will be chosen to perform on the August Wilson Stage on this evening, May 7th.
The top three contestants from the national competition are awarded college scholarship opportunities in addition to monetary awards and the gift of TCG’s Century Cycle collection. The first place winner will receive a $1000 cash prize, the runner-up a $500 cash prize and the honorable mention a $250 cash prize. Each of the winners will also become eligible for college scholarship opportunities.
The Monologue Competition is also featured in “The Start of Dreams”, a documentary directed by The Horne Brothers. Featuring A-list actors like Denzel Washington, Samuel L. Jackson and Phylicia Rashad, “The Start of Dreams” is packed with Hollywood’s elite weighing in on this important art form and what it means to the United States. The documentary has been screened at 9 festivals across the country including the Atlanta Film Festival, the Pan-African Film Festival in Los Angeles, and the UrbanWorld Festival in New York. A trailer for the film is available at the link listed below.
The national August Wilson Monologue Competition is presented by Delta Air Lines with additional funding support from Publix Supermarket Charities, Massey Charitable Trust, Bank of America, The Imlay Foundation, and Kathleen Rios.