Theatre majors nominated for regional award

Tyler Fayad, left, with Kayla Williams was nominated for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Irene Ryan Award for his role as Lester in “C.O.M. Wasn’t Built in a Day."

College of the Mainland students Tyler Fayad and Mackenzie Land have been nominated for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Irene Ryan Award for their performances in “C.O.M. Wasn’t Built in a Day.”

Eric Marsh, a theatre professor from Sam Houston State University, nominated Fayad for his role as Lester the Custodian and Land for her role as Ms. Foster after attending “C.O.M. Wasn’t Built in a Day.”

Land, of Dickinson, is a theatre major who aims to one day start a theatre for special needs children.

“The thing I enjoy about theatre is being able to pretend and become anything you want to be at the time that you're playing that character,” said Land. “I enjoy the unity of a department and the cast and crew of a show, there's just something about everyone working together to create this magnificent show that is just so special to me.”

Theatre major Fayad, of Pasadena, has a dream to perform on Broadway one day.

“The thing I love about theatre is how anyone from anywhere is welcomed and treated like family,” said Fayad. “ I also love the connection an actor can make with an audience member, capturing their full attention and their emotions.”

The Irene Ryan Award is a national scholarship competition hosted each year by KCACTF. Nominees travel with a scene partner to their KCACTF regional festival and compete against other nominees from colleges and universities across the region to advance to the National KCACTF Festival in April in Washington, D.C.

“This is the first time a COM theatre major has ever been nominated for the Irene Ryan Award! This is a major step forward for the COM Theatre Program and we could not be more proud of these two students and their fine work on our stage!” said H. Russ Brown, COM artistic/theatre director. “Eric loved the show and had some constructive and wonderful things to say about our production, the COM Theatre Program and the quality of students we are training.”

The award winners at each level are awarded scholarships as large as $5,000 paid directly to their schools for books and tuition, as well as the chance to be awarded scholarships and fellowships to attend other artistic opportunities.

The Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival is a national organization operated by the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The KCACTF organization's goal is to recognize and promote the best in acting and technical theatre at colleges and universities across the country.

Entries are adjudicated by KCACTF representatives, who then respond face to face to the cast and crew of each production. The adjudicator does not have to, but may - based on their excellence in performance and their apparent potential choose to nominate one or two actors from each show for the Irene Ryan Award. 

View the performance online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z8Zbhh5rGQE&feature=youtu.be.

Mackenzie Land, left, with Mike Fisher was nominated for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Irene Ryan Award for her performance as Ms. Foster in “C.O.M. Wasn’t Built in a Day.”

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