Edward Zaboroskie, a Columbus State University junior theater student, won the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival Region 4 Irene Ryan acting competition. His partner is Ansley Selman. The two young actors will go to Washington, D.C., on April 18 for the finals.
This is the second year in a row that a CSU theater student has won the regional award.
The Irene Ryan acting competition is named for the actor best known as Granny in "The Beverly Hillbillies." It's the highest collegiate acting award in the country.
Region 4 include colleges from Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama and Mississippi. Out of the thousands of participants in college productions in these states, nearly 500 graduate and undergraduate students were nominated for the acting competition for their superior work in college productions, including 12 from Columbus State.
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The nominated students select an acting partner and perform two scenes, as well as a song or a monologue. After the preliminary auditions, 32 pairs of semi-finalists are selected.
Also making the semifinals this year was CSU senior Carrie Poh, who partnered with Caleb Lawton. The semi-finals reduce the number of competitors to 16 pairs, and two pairs of students are selected as regional winners at the final audition. Zaboroskie has the unique accomplishment of being nominated twice, for his performances in "The Cripple of Inishmaan," directed by CSU theater professor Larry McDonald and "Senora Tortuga," directed by professor Brenda May Ito.
Zaboroskie and Selman will represent CSU at the national festival in April. They will receive an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., where they will participate in workshops and seminars with Tony Award-winning directors, authors and playwrights. On April 18, they will perform on the Kennedy Center stage for a chance to win the national title.
Still competing at the festival are CSU theater majors Shane Harrison (stage management), Jacqueline Kappes (Critics Institute) and Dureyea Collier (stage directing). The winners in these areas were not yet available.