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January 17, 2019

SVSU theatre student wins regional award for vocal excellence

A Saginaw Valley State University student's vocal talents earned him a prestigious honor while several of his classmates were praised at a recent theater festival featuring the best collegiate performing artists in the Midwest.

Over the winter break, 22 SVSU students displayed their acting skills, production expertise and more when they competed in several performing-arts related categories at the 2019 Kennedy Center American College Theatre Region III Festival (KCACTF) in Madison, Wisconsin, from Jan. 8 - 13.

Three SVSU students made it to the final round in their respective categories, and a fourth advanced to the national finals.

Theatre major Joshua Lloyd of Bay City and his partner Clay Singer, a psychology major from Frankenmuth, advanced from just under 300 students competing in the acting category to the final 16. This is the first time since 2014 that SVSU has had a student in the Acting finals.

Lloyd was also honored with the prestigious Voice and Speech Trainers Association's Vocal Excellence Award.

“It's a tremendous honor to be recognized by the American College Theatre Festival,” Lloyd said. “Attending the festival has always been a highlight of my winter semester, and to have finally made it through to finals and receiving the vocal excellence award only confirms that I must be on the right track. I'm incredibly thankful for family and friends rooting me on, and our superb faculty in the SVSU theatre department for their continued support.”

Olivia Greanias, a theatre major from Saginaw, competed in the musical theatre category and advanced to the final 16, marking the second consecutive year that SVSU was represented by a musical theatre finalist.

Arianna Whisman, a special education major and theatre minor from Bay City, made the national finals in the unrealized production costume design category.

Jennifer Lothian of Linwood, who graduated in December 2018 as a double major in communications and theatre, presented her costumes from the recent SVSU production of “The Servant of Two Masters” in the festival's costume parade. This is Lothian's second consecutive invitation to present her impeccable costume design work in the parade, which highlights costume design work by students and faculty members from across the region.

“The 2019 KCACTF Festival was a complete success,” said Ric Roberts, SVSU professor of theatre. “The theatre faculty, who traveled and coached with these 22 students, could not be prouder of all of their work.”

The Kennedy Center America College Theatre Region III covers colleges and universities in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin.