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With a proactive interest in cultivating and supporting arts leaders in the field, the College of Fellows has established several recent new recognition awards. We select the award recipients through a rigorous evaluation process involving multiple members of the College and with specific criteria for each scholarship.  We are pleased to support the arts leaders and artists of tomorrow today.

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The Jane Alexander
Emerging Actor Award

The College of Fellows Jane Alexander Emerging Artist Award is given to one actor or actress chosen from the Irene Ryan finalists at the KCACTF national festival. Fellow Bonnie Nelson Schwartz was instrumental in developing the award and Fellow Thomas Schumacher funded the award for a ten-year period. The awardee is determined by a small committee of two or three who judge a required essay and judge the performances in the Irene Ryan finals. The recipient is given a $2,500.00 check as part of the awards given after the Irene Ryan finals.

Jane Alexander
John Cauble

The John Cauble
Emerging Producer/Leader Award

The John Cauble Emerging Producer/Leader Award is given in memory of Fellow John Cauble. As Dean, Karen Berman assisted in developing and establishing this award. Fellow Thomas Schumacher funded this award in memory of his mentor John Cauble for a ten year period through two $50,000 donations over two years. An award of $5,000.00 is given to two individuals each year as part of the National Awards Ceremony following the finalist auditions of the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarships. The awardees are chosen by Victoria Nolan and Kelvin Dinkins Jr. of Yale School of Drama, the leaders of the ASPIRE Arts Leadership Institute, a partnership with LORT. The awardees come from underrepresented undergraduate theatre students from across the nation who have been selected through a regional professional development process to participate in the ASPIRE program on the National level. The student recipients also receive personal mentorship from Thomas Schumacher.

Charlene Gordon

The Charlene Gordon
Arts Impact Award

Recipients of this award are selected from the ASPIRE Arts Leadership program with the sponsorship of the Kennedy Center ‘s American College Theatre Festival National Committee and the College of Fellows of the American Theatre. Recipients receive mentorship with arts activist and advocate Dr. Humphries, current Dean and previous Board member of the Fellows, and funding support for arts advocacy participation with Americans for the Arts. Additionally, the awardees are invited to the Kennedy Center and NNPN MFA Playwrights Workshop for an eight-day summer residency for meetings with the artistic leaders of sixteen theatre companies from across the country, the programming and administrative leadership at the Kennedy Center, and with area arts administrators. This award was made possible through the generosity of arts philanthropist, Charlene Gordon.

Uta Hagen

The Uta Hagen

The Uta Hagen Award was originally given by the Fellows as part of the centenary celebration of the iconic theatre teacher. Fellow Bonnie Nelson Schwartz was instrumental in developing the award in collaboration with HB Studios in New York City and the KCACTF. Fellow Karen Berman funded the $2,500.00 award from the Fellows. The Uta Hagen Award consists of a week-long Uta Hagen teacher lab at HB Studios in New York City, airfare from KCACTF, and a $2,500.00 stipend check from the Fellows for travel and accommodations in New York City. The awardee is selected from female teachers of acting at a KCACTF affiliated college or university.


Everyone has the opportunity to make a change for good — no matter how big or small. Whatever amount you can give, or time you are willing to dedicate, know that your contribution makes a difference in the lives of our actors, artists, and producers. Your donation, together with those of our other supporters, brings us ever closer to our goal of enhancing the theatre community. Individual contributions support the programs of the College, including our scholarships.  

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