SMC students nominated for acting scholarship

first_imgSeveral Saint Mary’s students have been nominated for the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship Competition that will take place in Indianapolis in December. The competition, which will take place at the American College Theatre Festival (ACTF), is statewide and features students from colleges around Indiana. Sophomores Rebecca Strom and Genesis Vasquez and senior Makena Henell were nominated for their performances in the fall play, ‘Once a Belle.’ Junior Stephanie Johnson and sophomores Katy Stalter and Elizabeth Ferry were nominated for their roles in this past semester’s spring performance, ‘Lucky, Liar, Loser.’ Strom said she believes she was nominated because of the vulnerability and honesty required of her role as an openly lesbian professor. “The scenes in which I played the professor were especially emotional and honest,” she said. “I had to learn to be emotionally vulnerable onstage, so it became increasingly difficult to run through those scenes each night because my character was facing so much opposition and stress. I think the ACTF respondents and theatre professors really responded to the emotional weight of the scene. I was honored to be nominated for the award, but I really believe that the credit should go to all of the students, faculty members and alumni who shared their stories with us.”Johnson said she will be attending the American College Theatre Festival not only for the competition, but also for the opportunities the festival provides. “I will be attending ACTF not only because I was nominated for the Irene Ryan scholarship competition, but also because the festival provides me the opportunity to meet more people from other colleges, learn new skills and enjoy other’s art,” she said. Johnson said her process for getting into character is different each time. “I change my process depending on the role I am preparing for,” she said. “For my role in ‘Lucky, Liar, Loser,’ I spent more time focusing on musical pieces than I would in a production where I would not be playing an instrument on stage. My acting process is one of constant discovery and exploration, learning more about the character and how I relate to them.”Strom said she prepares for her roles by filling in the character’s background and using it as the basis for her portrayal. “For every role I’m cast in, I always try to fill in the “unknowns” of the character’s background based on context from the script,” she said. “It’s important for an actor to imagine the entirety of their character’s life, not just the events within the play. For ‘Once a Belle,’ this process was a bit different because we were working with real interviews from members of the Saint Mary’s community. For my role as the professor, I made sure to read the original interview, which included some experiences and thoughts that didn’t make it into the final script. My goal was always to honor the experiences of the professor who was courageous enough to share her story with us.” Johnson said she thinks that good acting is inseparable from being dedicated to the work.“Good acting to me is putting yourself into the work,” she said. “You don’t need to be the best actor on stage. If you care and are dedicated to what you are doing, you deserve the credit for that.”Strom said focus is what separates a good actor from a great actor. “To me, good acting means focus,” she said. “An actress must always be focused on every aspect of the character she is portraying, including her motivation, movement, desires, speech, relationships and background. A good actor will make the audience forget that there was ever a script.”Strom said acting has given her the opportunity to express herself without fear. “Being a part of theatre productions has always been a way for me to express myself without fear of judgment,” she said. “I am severely introverted, so people always ask me how I manage to stand onstage and perform in front of large audiences. I tell them that when I am onstage, I can’t be afraid because I’m a completely different person. Becoming the character I’m portraying and immersing myself in the world of the play allows me to release any anxiety or fears that I have in real life.”Johnson said even though performing onstage is frustrating, it is worthwhile upon completion of the show.  “The ability to perform is equivalent to working out. It is difficult, but ultimately makes you feel stronger and happier once you have completed a show,” she said. Tags: ACTF, Acting, award, scholarshiplast_img read more

Kevin Pietersen opts out of IPL 2017

first_imgKEVIN PIETERSEN will not play the 2017 season of the IPL, citing a busy winter as a reason for not entering the player auction scheduled for later this month.Pietersen, 36, was part of the Rising Pune Supergiants franchise in 2016 but played only four games before missing the rest of the tournament with a calf injury. He was released by the franchise in December last year and would have had to be bought at the player auction in February to play this year.“I won’t be going into the IPL auction,” Pietersen said on Twitter. “My winter has been too busy with all my travel and I don’t want to spend April/May away too!”Pietersen spent the winter playing the domestic T20 tournament in South Africa – 198 runs in five innings for Dolphins – and the Big Bash League in Australia, where he scored 268 runs in eight innings in Melbourne Stars’ run to the semi-final.He had played for Quetta Gladiators in the inaugural season of the PSL in 2016 and is set to be part of the team once again for the upcoming tournament from February 9 to March 5.IPL is scheduled to begin in the first week of April and end in the third week of May. (ESPN Cricinfo)last_img read more

Bemidji State looks to honor lake-jumping tradition with homecoming win

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on October 14, 2014 at 12:10 am Contact Paul: [email protected] | @pschweds Bemidji State needed motivation. The Beavers were 0-4 heading into their homecoming game against Southwest State in 1993 and had only won five games in the previous three seasons.In a staff meeting, graduate assistant Frank Haege proposed that if the team won the homecoming game, players and coaches would jump into Lake Bemidji, located just 10 yards beyond the fence that surrounds the southeast end zone of Chet Anderson Stadium in Bemidji, Minnesota. To spread the plan, coaches wrote a fake article before the game that said the Beavers won and then jumped in the lake. The article was posted in the locker room and around campus to energize the community.It took two years before the team got to practice the ritual in 1995, and Bemidji State has jumped in the lake 14 times in 19 years since. The Beavers (2-4, 1-3 Northern Sun Intercollegiate) will go for jump No. 15 against Minot State on Saturday. This is the latest in the calendar year that BSU has hosted its homecoming game since 1993, meaning the water could be the coldest it’s ever been for the lake jump.“At the time I thought it would be kind of a one-time thing, a one-game thing,” said Haege, who is now the head coach at Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minnesota. “There was no plan or idea it would be a long-term deal.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Beavers lost to Southwest State and finished 0-10 in 1993. The following year, the Beavers lost its homecoming game again.But on Oct. 14, 1995, Bemidji State took part in the tradition for the first time. Today, the tradition is well-known in the Bemidji State community. If the Beavers have a safe lead toward the end of the game, fans begin mobbing the shore. They create a path for players and coaches to run from the field to the lake and shower them with cheers.Once in the water, the team sings the school’s fight song while splashing and smiling. The team only spends about five minutes in the water due to the temperatures, but the cold doesn’t bother the players.“It’s kind of like a football game,” Haege said of jumping in. “You get hit and it probably hurts but you don’t really feel it at first because it’s all adrenaline and emotion.” The tradition began as a motivational tactic and it still serves that purpose. Throughout the week, coaches joke with players by telling them to get their bathing suits ready. Players talk about getting in the lake, senior captain Dylan Valentine said, instead of saying, “Let’s win this week.”The Beavers have won four consecutive homecoming games, and no one on the current roster has experienced a homecoming game that didn’t end with the lake jump.“You don’t want to be the team that doesn’t end up going in the lake,” Valentine said.With the stadium just steps from the water, the ritual is unique to the program. And even though it is just jumping in a lake, it’s important to the Bemidji State community.“I was like, ‘Really? Jumping in a lake?’” Valentine said. “I didn’t think it was actually going to mean that much until I actually did it.”Over the years, strategies have been developed for the best lake jumping experience. Sometimes freshmen are so excited that they forget to take off their cleats and shoulder pads. Experienced players and coaches remember to bring an extra pair of clothes to the game. Valentine said some people run in without paying attention to rocks at the bottom of the lake and hurt their feet.Last week, frost appeared on the ground and people in Bemidji, Minnesota had to scrape ice off their windshields.But head coach Jeff Tesch isn’t worried.Said Tesch: “It’s going to be a little bit chilly but believe me, if we win, I don’t think the guys will complain too much.” Commentslast_img read more