Congratulations To The Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition Winners !

Pictured are the Winners of the 2nd Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition (L-R) 1st – Katara Willis  (BAVPA); 2nd – Nora Collins (Buffalo Seminary) ;3rd – Mickale Jonie Gilliam (Buffalo Culinary School) photo by Ron Tillman

The 2nd Annual August Wilson Monologue Competition recently announced the winners from the 2019 competition held at Buffalo State College Rockwell Hall Performing Arts Center on February 9th.

Presented by the Paul Robeson Theatre and the African American Cultural Center with the support of Superintendent Kriner Cash and the Buffalo Board of Education , the competition had 11 strong contestants and three winners (all young women)  who graciously made their mark:  1st Place Katara Willis a Senior Buffalo Academy of Visual Performing Arts who graduates this year with a Theatre Arts diploma; 2nd place Nora Collins of Buffalo Seminary who is student of the arts and sports;  and 3rd place Mickale Jonie Gilliam a student of the Buffalo Culinary School.

During the event students performed their monologues in front of friends, family and the general public, including a reputable panel of judges. The first and second place students received an all-expense-paid trip to New York City for the National finals, which are scheduled to take place in May 2019 at the August Wilson Theatre on Broadway. The third place winner will serve as an alternate.

The three winning students also received a cash scholarship. The student winners from the regional competition will receive additional training and rehearsals provided by the Paul Robeson Theatre throughout February, March and April. There were also special performances by actors Augustus Donaldson Jr. and Alphonso Walker Jr. The Mistress of Ceremonies was Renita Shadwick. Paulette D. Harris is the Buffalo Regional Competition Coordinator  who,  along with Executive Director of the African American Cultural Center Agnes Bain,  are responsible for bringing this opportunity to Buffalo.

The Monologue Competition, named in honor of Pulitzer Prize winning playwright  August Wilson,  is designed to inspire and educate high school students to use monologues from Wilson’s “American Century Cycle,” a 10-play cycle that details the complexity of the African American experience in the 20th century. Congratulations Winners!