Production Student Receives Top Award from Regional Theatre Conference

VPA Production and Design major Sophia Coscia was recognized as a Keynote Emerging Artist of Promise (KEAP) recipient at the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) in Louisville, KY, on Feb. 29.

The KEAP award provides winners the opportunity to attend the theatre conference with no admission cost, complimentary access to a SETC membership for one year, reserved seating at the Friday lunch and Saturday night awards dinner, attendance at an intimate Q&A session with a keynote speaker, and undergraduate auditions/interviews.

According to SETC, applicants must demonstrate “scholastic aptitude, artistic potential and financial need,” and the award is only given to five candidates.

“Sophia was the only technical production student to win out of the five recipients,” said Caleb Carrier, an instructor in the Booker VPA Production Department. “In addition to attending multiple workshops she was able to interact with prospective employers, colleges and industry professionals.”

Some of these presenters were Broadway producer Ashlee Latimer, Broadway stage manager Matthew Aaron Stern, and producer of The National Black Theatre Festival, Jackie Alexander.

“It was so exciting to meet Jackie and after a bit of conversation it was interesting to know that he knew Nate Jacobs, artistic director of Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe,” said Sophia, who has served as a properties intern for the local theatre company since January 2019.

In addition to keynote presentations and industry workshops, Sophia had the opportunity to audition and complete portfolio interviews with colleges and professionals from the industry. This resulted in acceptances to Florida School of the Arts, Royal Welsh College, and Liverpool Institute for the Performing Arts, to name a few.

Production upperclassmen instructor Alex Pinchin said, “We are proud to hear that her portfolio was received in high regards by adjudicators. She has a keen eye for design and it’s apparent that we aren’t the only ones who believe that.”

“Everyone I spoke with seemed very impressed by what we are learning as students in the production department at Booker VPA,” Sophia shared. “From what I understand not many schools use the technology that we integrate on our productions, so it’s nice to know we stay ahead of the game. I am also very thankful for this program and Booker High School for preparing me to be a well-rounded individual in my craft and offering me the opportunity to access supportive academic offerings.”

The Live Entertainment Production and Design department is one of six programs within the Visual and Performing Arts Program at Booker High School. Students in this program are exposed to diverse instruction in the art of producing the technical elements for live entertainment including dance, theatre, music concerts, lectures, and more. The skills learned in this program make our students emerging leaders in the fast paced and rapidly developing entertainment industry. Interested in joining the ranks? Click here to learn more.

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3 comments on “Production Student Receives Top Award from Regional Theatre Conference

Congratulations from all your friends at Venice Theatre!

Congratulations. Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe is so proud of all your achievements. Way to go Sophia.

Yes ma’am!!! So proud of you!!!

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