Announcing our 2020 winners!
Premiere Stages is proud to announce the winners of the Premiere Senior Endeavor Awards, a new playwriting initiative established in response to the challenges of COVID-19. Thank you to everyone who participated!
Pascack Hills High School
Grace McGory, a rising senior at Pascack Hills High School in Montvale, NJ, is the winner of the High School Senior Endeavor Award for her play Enter Benvolio. She is an active participant in PHHS’s theater program and the Gay-Straight Alliance. Grace has participated in multiple NaNoWriMos and is a recent recipient of the Governor’s Award in Arts Education for her short story Heart to Hart.
Running with Scissors
Kean University Class of ‘20
Recent Kean University graduate Christopher Grant of Linden, NJ, is the winner of the College Senior Endeavour Award for his play Running with Scissors. Chris is enrolled in the Equity Membership Candidate Program and recently obtained a Bachelor of Arts Theatre degree at Kean University. His one-act play A Weed in a Cold Dry Patch was presented at Kean. Mr. Grant is an actor and writer who wishes to create more works of art to tell stories often left untold.
Lantern Hill Senior Living Community
Becky Gibby, a resident of Lantern Hill Senior Living Community in Providence, NJ is the winner of the NJ Senior Endeavor Award for her play Corona Farewell. Becky Gibby wrote her first play at the age of 12 entitled Jane and the Sunflower Fairies. Thus began a lifetime of creating dramatic works for various age groups. She has crafted many stage adaptations for primary and secondary students, written song lyrics for school productions and most recently, written plays for Senior actors. She spent years directing Middle and High School musicals and amateur theatre.
Her literary writings include a young adult historical novel, Forged in Philadelphia (Abbott Press) and a picture book I Walked My Dog Around the Pond (Mascot Books). A sequel, I Walk My Dog Around the Town (Mascot Books) is due for release Fall 2020.
Becky received her BS in Elementary Education from the University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Theological Studies from Drew University. She is delighted that her one-act play Corona Farewell had received this endorsement from Kean University.
Honorable Mentions went to Teva Alon from Bergen County Academics in Hackensack, Olivia Landolfi from Immaculate Heart Academy in the Township of Washington, Claire Munley from Red Bank Regional High School in Red Bank, and Lindsey Polevoy from Bergen County Academics in Hackensack in the High School category; Nicole Gable, Emily Niemeyer and Arly Rubens in the College category; and Donna Neithe from Canterbury Village in West Orange, NJ in the Senior category. Honorable Mentions receive a $100 award and professional readings of excerpts of their plays.
The Premiere Senior Endeavor Awards offer unique opportunities to seniors in three categories: the High School Senior Endeavor Award, given to a rising senior who will be completing his/her/their junior year of high school in May or June of 2020, the College Senior Endeavor Award, given to a Kean University senior who graduated from Kean in May of 2020 and the NJ Senior Endeavor Award presented to a senior who is currently residing in a New Jersey residential community (Assisted Living or Independent Living).
All three winners will receive $1000 and a virtual developmental reading with a professional cast, director and dramaturg.
The Bauer Boucher Playwriting Awards
The awards recognize the work of Kean University’s playwrights. Premiere Stages accepts submissions for the Bauer Boucher each fall from any writers who are currently attending or have graduated from Kean University, and the Award-winning play is selected in January.