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Inspirational Theatre Educators Recognized by National Association

Inspirational Theatre Educators Recognized by National Association

The Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) recognizes individuals who have inspired their students and dedicated themselves to providing quality theatre education with the Inspirational Theatre Educator Award. Veteran theatre educators and EdTA members Kelly Carlson, Philip Lee "Peelee" Clark, and Carolyn Little will each receive this award at EdTA's National Conference.

EdTA is a national nonprofit organization with approximately 125,000 student and professional members that supports and promotes school theatre. EdTA is the home of the International Thespian Society, an Honor Society for middle and high school theatre students, which has inducted more than 2.3 million members since 1929.

Kelly Carlson of Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts in Baltimore, Maryland, was cited in her nomination for her thoughtful guidance of students, encouraging them to persevere through challenges and constantly work to improve their craft as thespians. She encourages collaboration and participation in all areas of theatre, and takes great care to ensure students are learning in a safe, positive environment, where they can feel comfortable enough to experiment, make bold choices, and learn from mistakes.

Peelee Clark of West Potomac High School in Alexandria, Virginia, was cited for working diligently to give students the tools to succeed, not only in his program, but also in life beyond high school. He has actively sought out additional theatre opportunities for his students such as performing at the Kennedy Center, attending professional regional and Broadway productions, training with outside professionals in a wide variety of skills, and working with teaching artists at the Shakespeare and Folgers Theatres. Clark also encourages students to self-advocate and teaches them the critical importance of teamwork.He has helped many students prepare to pursue theatre in college and as a potential career.

Carolyn Little of Toms River High School North in Toms River, New Jersey, was cited for demonstrating the value of high standards and professionalism in theatre and beyond. She goes above and beyond to support and encourage students to take on leadership roles in productions, and teaches them to adapt to any situation they may encounter. Little uses theatre experiences to educate students and audiences, and to create a dialogue within the community. With each production she has partnered with a charitable or awareness organization relevant to the show's theme, donating a portion of the ticket sales.

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