Manhattan College Players Earn Kennedy Center Citizen Artist Award

The Players performed The Laramie Project, which chronicled the life and death of Matthew Shepard.

Kennedy Center logoBravo!

The Manhattan College Players have received The Kennedy Center Citizen Artist Award for The Laramie Project.

The Kennedy Center Citizen Artist Awards recognize programs in higher education using theatrical production to promote long-term societal impact through an artistic lens, to encourage empathetic exploration of the complex cultural and physical world, and to advocate for justice on campus and throughout the world. 

“This is so exciting for the students and the school,” said J.R. Caldwell, director of the Manhattan College Players. “It is a huge honor for our students and school to be recognized for the second time this school year.”

Earlier this year, the Players’ production of The Laramie Project was chosen as one of the top 10 college and university productions in Region 1 (New England and New York) from the fall 2020 semester. 

After Matthew Shepard’s murder in 1998, members of the Tectonic Theater Project in New York City traveled to Laramie, Wyoming, to interview residents about how the attack had affected the town. These transcripts were transformed into the play The Laramie Project, which tells the stories of real people who lived at the epicenter of one of the nation’s most heinous anti-gay hate crimes.

Envisioned in 1968 and launched in 1969 by Roger L. Stevens, the Kennedy Center’s founding chairman, the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF) encourages and celebrates the finest and most diverse theatrical productions from colleges and universities nationwide.

Manhattan College Players Cast: Jonathan Abadir, Matt Blackwood, Jennifer Bueti, Erica Cafarelli, Izzy Campbell, Luis Chavez, Ryan Danahy, Richard Divirgillo, Adam Granger, Anna Jerrems, Maren Kain, Camryn Kidney, Amy Kohli, Bianca Perez, Emma Piazza, Samantha Rini, Sophie Ryan, Cameron Turner.

Crew: Joe Bonaventura, Grace Geckler, Payton Hayes,Teresa Nunan, Theresa Perez, Katheryn Slotterback.

By Pete McHugh