Theatre For Young Audiences/USA Announces the 2019 National TYA/USA Award Recipients

Theatre of Young Audiences/USA (?TYA/USA?)?, the national service organization supporting, connecting, and advocating for the field of theatre for young audiences, will present the ?2019 National TYA/USA Awards? in three categories: ?Stan Foote ?and? Rosemary Newcott? will receive the ?Harold Oaks Award for Sustained Excellence in TYA?; ?Chicago Children's Theatre? (Jacqueline Russell, Artistic Director) will receive the ?TYA Artistic Innovation Award?; and ?Courtney J. Boddie ?will receive the ?TYA Community Impact Award?.

The awards will be presented on May 9, 2019 as part of the 2019 TYA/USA National Festival & Conference, the largest gathering of theatre for young audiences professionals in North America. Over 300 artists, educators and administrators will convene at this year's event, held at The Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, to experience 12 productions from around the globe, exchange current practice, and discuss the future of the TYA industry.

"TYA/USA is thrilled to honor these incredible leaders who have each had a profound impact on their communities and the national TYA field," said ?Jonathan Shmidt Chapman, Executive Director of TYA/USA?. "At a time when TYA theatres across the country are increasingly unable to support the development of new work, these four awardees have blazed a trail in significantly expanding the TYA canon while creating new pathways of access for underrepresented audiences."

The ?National TYA/USA Awards? honor excellence in the field of Theatre for Young Audiences. Selected by a committee of peers from nominations made by TYA/USA members, awards are given annually in the following categories:

? Harold Oaks Award for Sustained Excellence in TYA?: Rosemary Newcott & Stan Foote

The Harold Oaks Award for Sustained Excellence in TYA honors the achievements of individual leaders and companies that have made a significant and lasting impact on the field of TYA.

As the Sally G. Tomlinson Artistic Director of Theatre for Youth and Families at Alliance Theatre, Rosemary Newcott's has pioneered a model of excellence through her artistry and leadership, including the creation of the innovative ?Kathy & Ken Bernhardt Theatre for the Very Young?. It will be particularly meaningful to celebrate Newcott in her own artistic home at The Alliance Theatre.

The recent announcement of the upcoming retirement of Oregon Children's Theatre Artistic Director, Stan Foote, provides the perfect moment to celebrate his incredible legacy in the TYA industry, developing works that have been produced across the country and passionately serving the young people of Portland for 28 years.

? The ?TYA Artistic Innovation Award:? Chicago Children's Theatre (Jacqueline Russell, Artistic Director)

The ?TYA Artistic Innovation Award? honors ?an individual or company that has demonstrated innovation - experimentation in content or in form - in recent artistic work in TYA.

Led by Founding Artistic Director, Jacqueline Russell, Chicago Children's Theatre has demonstrated national leadership in groundbreaking artistic vision and audience inclusivity as vanguards of our field, pushing the genre forward in their work.

? TYA Community Impact Award: C? ourtney J. Boddie

The ?TYA Community Impact Award,? honoring ?an individual or company that has demonstrated community impact through a project or initiative related to TYA. Awardees utilize the power of TYA to significantly enrich an underserved community in creative and meaningful ways.

Courtney J. Boddie, Director of Education/School Engagement, at The New Victory Theater, has transformed communities across the five boroughs of New York City with her powerful work connecting schools, teachers, and students to the performing arts.

This 2019 Selection Committee included Khalia Davis (TYA artist and 2019 TYA/USA Emerging Leader Fellow), Teresa Fisher (New York University), Jenny Millinger (Childsplay), Kassie Misiewicz (Trike Theatre), and Rachel Thuermer (Dare to Dream Theatre).

For more information, visit ?http://www.tyausa.org/fellowships-and-awards/national-tya-awards/

MORE ABOUT THE 2019 NATIONAL TYA/USA AWARD RECIPIENTS

COURTNEY J. BODDIE

Courtney J. Boddie, New Victory Director of Education/School Engagement, oversees all programs related to school communities including the ?New Victory school partnership program?, teacher professional development training in the performing arts and an innovative approach in the professional development of more than 50 New Victory Teaching Artists. In the last 7 years alone, Ms. Boddie has expanded the theater's scope of work in such programs as Victory Dance, which provides free dance and dance education to NYC summer schools; Create, a theater-based teacher professional development track for the city's Pre-K expansion, the largest in the nation; and GIVE, a brand new initiative to address equitable student engagement in inclusion classrooms.

For the 2019 TYA Community Impact Award, TYA/USA recognizes ?her leadership in ?New Victory SPARK (Schools with the Performing Arts Reach Kids), a robust multi-year arts program that has transformed New York City school communities previously underserved in the arts. Through intensive relationships with schools' administrative and teaching staffs, New Victory SPARK utilizes the theater's ?existing school programs?--including live performances by international arts companies, a highly trained ensemble of Teaching Artists and smartly-designed classroom curricula--to supply performing arts engagement that is as sustainable, creative and impactful.

During her tenure at The New Victory, the Theater received the Arts Education Award (2008) from Americans for the Arts and a special Drama Desk Award (2012) for "...nurturing a love of theater in young people." ?Ms. Boddie is the Creator and Host of ?Teaching Artistry with Courtney J. Boddie?, a monthly podcast featuring engaging and investigative interviews, roundtable conversations and panels with artists and arts education leaders. She is an adjunct professor at New York University and The New School. Ms. Boddie was President of the Association of Teaching Artists (ATA) 2015 to 2017 and is currently on the Board of Directors (Treasurer, 2018-19). Additionally, she serves on the Teaching Artist Committee of the NYC Arts in Education Roundtable, the editorial board for the Teaching Artist Journal and ?is a Women's Center Media SheSource. Prior to joining The New Victory Theater in 2003, Ms. Boddie was Program Associate for Empire State Partnerships (NYSCA) and a teaching artist for Roundabout Theatre Company. She received her Master's degree from the Educational Theatre Graduate Program at New York University.

STAN FOOTE

Stan has worked for ?Oregon Children's Theatre? for 28 years and has been the Artistic Director since the 2001-2002 season. Stan received his BA in Theater from Sacramento State University has been directing, teaching, and acting for 35 years. He has received Portland Drammy Awards for Outstanding Direction for OCT's ?Stuart Little a? nd ?The Gondoliers ?at Mocks Crest. His production of ?Kiss of The Spider Woman, originally produced by Miracle Theater and remounted for Borderlands Theater in Tucson, was named the outstanding Drama of the 2002-2003 Tucson season.

Stan was honored as a national leader in Theater for Young Audiences by being elected to the board of Theatre for Young Audiences/USA. His passion for creating new works has led to directing staged readings at the Kennedy Center's New Visions New Voices and NYU's New Plays for Young Audiences. He had the privilege of working with two Newbery Award-winning authors, Lois Lowry and Louis Sachar, to adapt their novels for OCT's stages. Stan's direction and guidance was instrumental in commissioning Eric Coble's adaptation of Lois Lowry's ?The Giver? to audiences in Portland, which has led to more than 300 productions nationally and internationally. ?The Giver? was also the beginning of OCT's New Works Initiative, commissioning and producing one or more new works each season. In the process of commissioning these new plays, with Stan's guidance, OCT has partnered nationally to co-commission plays with First Stage in Milwaukee, Dallas Children's Theatre, Bay Area Children's Theatre, and Magik Theatre in San Antonio.

Stan loves working in this community; teaching classes at Friends of the Children, Saint Mary's Home for Boys, and The Boys and Girls Clubs. He also helps mentor the young actors in OCT's Young Professionals Company, a year-long theatrical training program for teens. Directing highlights include ?The Laramie: Ten Years Later,? benefiting Basic Rights Oregon and the Matthew Shepard Fund, and ?Falsettos in Concert, b? enefiting Our House. ? O? ther non-TYA directing projects include ?Jesus Christ Superstar?, ?Into the

Woods, Blue Plate Special,? ?Psycho Beach Party,? ?Strange Snow ?and? Pump Boys and Dinettes?.? S? tan is grateful to live in Portland, Oregon and to have worked with the brilliant artists in this community. Stan's guiding belief has been that "young people are intelligent growing human beings."

ROSEMARY NEWCOTT

Rosemary Newcott (Director) is the Sally G. Tomlinson Artistic Director of Theatre for Youth and Families and has worked at the ?Alliance Theatre? since 1988. Her directing credits include ?Paige in Full;? ?The Jungle Book;? ?Alice Between ?(premiere); ?A Christmas Carol;? ?Cinderella and Fella ?(premiere); ?Slur ?(premiere); Waiting for Balloon ?(premiere); ?The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe?; Pearl Cleage's ?Tell Me My Dream (premiere);?Courage ?(premiere); ?The Wizard of Oz; Seussical;? ?Class of 3000 Live! (? premiere); ?Go Dog Go!?; Einstein Is a Dummy ?(premiere); ?The Book of Ruth?; ?The Hobbit?; and many more.

She directed the Alliance's Palefsky Collision Project for its first 10 years and pioneered the Alliance's innovative Kathy & Ken Bernhardt Theatre for the Very Young. Favorite directing experiences nationally include ?Jason Invisible a? nd ?Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical ?for the Kennedy Center, and ?Frida Libre for La Jolla Playhouse.

Rosemary was named an Atlanta Lexus Leader of the Arts in December 2001 and also received a prestigious Princess Grace Foundation Fellowship. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution named her the best director of the year in 2002 and, in 2005, she won the GTC Distinguished Career Award. She is a 2009 recipient of the Princess Grace Special Projects award and several Suzi Bass awards, including the 2010 Spirit of Suzi award and the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award. She has served on the boards of TYA/USA and Kennesaw State University's theater department. Rosemary has degrees from New Jersey City University and Northwestern University, for whom she currently serves as an Industry Mentor. She is a member of AEA and SDC. She is embarking on a new incentive called CONNECT which is a creative experience for early stage folks with dementia and their caregivers. This is Rosemary's final season as Alliance Artistic Director of Theatre for Youth and Families, and she will be forever grateful for the many gifts she has been afforded through her association with so many remarkable human beings.

CHICAGO CHILDREN'S THEATRE

Led by Founding Artistic Director, Jacqueline Russell, ?Chicago Children's Theatre? was founded in 2005 with a big idea: Chicago is the greatest theatre city in the world, and it deserves a great children's theatre.? ?Nearly 15 years later, CCT is Chicago's largest professional theater company devoted exclusively to children and young families, and has established a national reputation for the production of first-rate children's theatre, with professional writing, performing, and directorial talent and high-quality design and production expertise.

Chicago Children's Theatre has produced 20 world premieres in the last 12 years including ?The Selfish Giant?, ?The Hundred Dresses,? ?Jackie and Me?, ?The Houdini Box,? ?Mr. Chickee's Funny Money?, Leo Lionni's Frederick?, ?Wonderland, Alice's Rock & Roll Adventure,? ?Jabari Dreams of Freedom?, ?The Year I Didn't Go To School: A Homemade Circus?, Manual Cinema's ?Magic City?, ?My Wonderful Birthday Suit!?, ?Last Stop on Market Street?, ?X Marks the Spot,? ?The World Inside Me? (with New York's Spellbound Theatre) and ?The

Watsons Go To Birmingham - 1963?. These productions enjoyed successful inaugural runs in Chicago, many followed by productions at theaters across the U.S.

Chicago Children's Theatre has garnered six NEA Art Works grants, supporting the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence. In 2017, CCT became the first theater for young audiences in the U.S. to win a National Theatre Award from the American Theatre Wing, creators of the Tony Awards.

In January 2017, the company celebrated the opening of its new, permanent home, Chicago Children's Theatre, The Station, located at 100 S. Racine Avenue in Chicago's West Loop community. The building, formerly the Chicago Police Station for the 12t? h? District, was repurposed into a beautiful, LEED Gold-certified, mixed-use performing arts, education and community engagement facility that now welcomes all Chicago families. CCT also continues to grow its education programs, offering classes, workshops, winter and spring break camps, and summer camps for ages 0 to 13. CCT offers free tickets to more than 5,000 low-income students each season in partnership with Chicago Public Schools.

In addition to leading Chicago Children's Theatre's new play development, main stage, and education programs, Jacqueline Russell is the creator of the Red Kite Project, a multi-sensory interactive theatre program tailored specifically to children with special needs. Recently, Jacqueline created and directed an innovative production, ?X Marks the Spot, a? multi-sensory experience inspired by her work with children with visual impairments. In 2010, she was appointed by the U.S. State Department to serve as Cultural Envoy to Canada, was honored with the 2013 "Hero of the Year Award" from the Chicago chapter of Autism Speaks, and was recently honored as one of 20 women who have shaped arts and culture in Chicago on the Kerry James Marshall mural at the Chicago Culture Center.

Chicago Children's Theatre is led by Co-Founders, Artistic Director Jacqueline Russell and Board Chair Todd Leland, with Board President Eric Neveux. For more, visit? ?chicagochildrenstheatre.org?.



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