#TWF18 Crowns Stella Shouting Contest Winner
Participants of the 32nd annual Tennessee Williams Literary Festival descend to Jackson Square for the 2018 edition of the Stella Shouting Contest in hopes of seeing who will best channel their inner Tennessee Williams.Each year, the annual Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival ends with a contest of Stanleys shout to Stella positioned on a balcony in Jackson Square - and the roles are reversed when a woman is doing the shouting.
The NOLA Project's Cecile Monteyne provided inspiration on the Jackson Square balcony as our Stella. Local actor Jake Wynne-Wilson provided inspiration as our Stanley.
This year, (Roger Bartlett, St. Albany, UK) shouted for Stella and wowed the audience and judges. Bartlett reminded the audience of Stanley's cry when reading A Streetcar Named Desire for the first time securing his place as the top winner.
Along with Bartlett, Chris Turner-Neal (Marigny) won 2nd place and Marj Brown (Bywater) came in 3rd."Bartlett's crescendo on his final shout sealed his spot as the winner. He displayed emotion and a great voice distinctive in presentation and skill." commented contest Judge Stanwood Duval. On how Ian McNulty came to score the winning contestant: "Conviction is easy. Desperation is impressive. This man was desperate." On his win, Roger Bartlett shared: "I'm just here on holiday. We had seen about the Tennessee Williams Festival before visiting and had just been to Super Sunday, came over and said 'why not?' Characteristic of New Orleans, it was just meant to be a bit of fun." This is Bartlett's first visit to New Orleans with his wife, Tina Bartlett.
As always, Twenty-five (25) contestants were given three (3) "shouts" each. After the first round, the judges chose the Top Five (5) to perform again for selection of 3rd, 2nd and winner.
All five finalist receive a festival swag bag. In addition, the three top finalists will receive Stella Beer and 2019 festival passes.
Contest judges included:
- Judge Stanwood Duval is a retired federal judge who managed Hurricane Katrina-related litigation in the New Orleans area and served as the U.S. District Court Judge for the Eastern District of Louisiana.
- Calvin Trillin is one of the most diverse of American writers. He has written about food in such classics as The Tummy Trilogy, which includes the beloved Alice Let's Eat. His most recent book is Jackson, 1964: And Other Dispatches from 50 Years of Reporting on Race in America. Known for his writing for the New Yorker and his work as "Deadline Poet" for The Nation, he is a journalist, novelist, memoirist and humorist.
- Ian McNulty is a food writer for the New Orleans Advocate, covering culture, personality, and trends in city's food obsession. His commentary series "Where Y'Eat" airs weekly on NPR affiliate WWNO, and he is a frequent contributor to WWL-TV in New Orleans. Ian is the author of two books: Louisiana Rambles, a travel narrative about south Louisiana, and A Season of Night, an account of the first months in the city aft er Hurricane Katrina.
- Anne Lanier Williams,Tennessee Williams's niece.
Stella and Stanley Bio:
Cecile Monteyne is a New Orleans native who attended Tulane University. She is an ensemble member with The NOLA Project, with whom she has appeared in Marie Antoinette, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, A Few Good Men, Shiner, and Twelfth Night. She is the creator and producer of You Don't Know the Half of It, currently in its fifth season at Le Petit Theatre (next show April 2nd). Her latest creation is By Any Scenes Necessary, the NOLA Project's new theatre/improv comedy show, which is a part of the Tennessee William's Festival this year. In 2015, she was named New Orleans' Big Easy Awards Entertainer of the Year and in 2016, she had the honor of being listed as one of Gambit Magazine's 40 Under 40. She also starred in, co-wrote and co-produced her first feature film with her brother, who also directed. One Night Stand Off will begin the festival circuit later this year.
Jake Wynne-Wilson is an actor/performer who has called New Orleans home for the past 4 years. Trained at the Conservatory of Music - University of the Pacific and The American Conservatory Theatre, he has acted in many local stage, television, and film productions. Jake has worked with Southern Rep, Tulane Shakespeare Festival, Bayou Playhouse, Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre, and is a company member with See Em' On Stage productions. He was nominated for a Big Easy award for his role in Terminator:The Musical, produced by SEOS. Jake is thrilled to be returning to the Tennessee William's Festival after playing Stanley in a second line 'Search For Stella' parade produced by Backspace Bar for 2015's festival, as well as Southern Rep's Suddenly, Last Summer that same year. You can see him next in a role on the television show Nashville, as well as performing improv comedy every month at The New Movement theater.
Thank you to our sponsors, Gulf Coast Bank and Trust Company and The New Orleans Advocate for making the shouting contest possible!
About the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival
The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival celebrates the genius of Tennessee Williams, who once called our city his "spiritual home," and the contemporary artists who are as honest and unflinching in their examination of the human condition as our patron playwright. Founded in 1986 by a group of cultural enthusiasts, the Festival has grown from a small gathering of 500 to a five-day literary and multi-cultural event, which sees 11,000+ seats filled each year. In late March, we toast Williams' birthday with theater, literary panels, food, and music events featuring luminaries and the brightest new talents in American arts. For more information, visit www.tennesseewilliams.net or find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival (TW/NOLF) is supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council. Funding has also been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works. Major backing comes from the New Orleans Theatre Association, which supports performing arts throughout the Greater New Orleans area, and the TW/NOLF is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts for Literature.