Scholarships, Awards, and Competitions
Scholarships, Awards, and Competitions
Each year the Theatre & Dance Department awards over $34,000 in scholarships and awards to undergraduates. UNH undergraduate students are invited to apply for relevant theatre scholarships, annually. The Theater and Dance faculty will also select other students for scholarships (without application).
Click HERE to access Undergraduate Scholarship Application.
JOSEPH D. BATCHELLER MEMORIAL ENDOWED FUND The Joseph D. Batcheller Memorial Endowed Fund is established to commemorate Professor Dr. Joseph D. Batcheller's life-long contribution to theatre at UNH. The Fund will enable annual awards to be given to an undergraduate Theatre Major/s who displays outstanding performance abilitiy/ies in theatre or musical theatre. Selection criteria are: excellence in theatre/dance performance, representation of ensemble spirit, and sharing of one's talent through outreach activities. Financial need is not to be a factor in making this award.
THE RAYMOND J. BERNIER SCENIC ARTS SCHOLARSHIP FUND This scholarship fund was established with gifts from colleagues, theatre and dance alumni, and friends of Raymond J. Bernier. Professor Bernier was a long-time member of the faculty and scenic arts designer/technical director for the University Theatre. Income from the fund provides financial assistance to full-time undergraduate students enrolled at the University of New Hampshire. Candidates must be Theatre majors who are serious students of the scenic arts. Faculty members will make annual recommendations of qualified candidates.
THE GILBERT B. DAVENPORT THEATRE SCHOLARSHIP The purpose of the Gilbert B. Davenport Theatre Scholarship is to provide scholarship awards to junior and senior theatre majors at the University of New Hampshire who most embody the collaborative theatrical spirit of Gil Davenport through department curricular and core curricular activities. Candidates must be Junior or Senior Theatre majors. Financial need is not a factor in the award.
THE JOHN C. EDWARDS THEATRE SCHOLARSHIP
Dr. Edwards taught at the University of New Hampshire from 1961 through 1995 and was instrumental in the creation of the UNH Summer Repertory Theatre, which he supervised from 1968 through 1987. During his career he directed over one hundred full-length plays, musicals and operas which ranged from Greek and Shakespeare to modern experimental productions of Pinter and Becket. In addition, Dr. Edwards adapted forty plays from short stories and novels. Twice he was awarded a Gold Medal from the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. He served as the regional chairman of the American College Theatre Festival and was a member of the National Play Selection Committee for the Kennedy Center. Additionally, Dr. Edwards served as chairman of the College and University Division of the New England Theatre Conference from 1965 to 1968. The purpose of this award is to encourage new talent by providing scholarship awards to sophomore, junior, and senior theatre majors at the University of New Hampshire who have an interest in performing. Students must have a minimum 3.0 grade point average.
WILLIAM G. HENNESSY SCHOLARSHIP FUND After a brief career as a professional actor, William Hennessy came to UNH in 1923 as an instructor of English, director of dramatics, and debating coach. As the faculty advisor to the "Mask and Dagger Society" he spearheaded University's dramatic activities and continued to be a chief factor in developing UNH’s drama program until his retirement in 1961. This scholarship, established in 1963, is in his honor. Income from the fund is used to provide awards to students interested in drama on the basis of talent, academic achievement, and financial need. Eligible candidates must be Theatre and Dance majors. The Chairperson of the Department of Theatre and Dance provides scholarship recommendations.
ELIZABETH JONES, CLASS OF 1922, SCHOLARSHIP This bequest of Elizabeth Jones, Milton, New Hampshire, was established in 1975. Elizabeth Jones was sister to Robert Edmond Jones, the American scene designer. Income for this fund provides at least two scholarships annually to juniors, seniors, or graduate students, one male and one female, unmarried, studying in the Fine Arts. New Hampshire residents interested in creative writing or teaching receive preference. Nominees must be Theatre and Dance majors who are deserving students of good character and average intelligence; thereby finding the incentive and encouragement to pursue their chosen field of study. It was the donor's wish, but not direction, that the scholarships be awarded by a special scholarship committee comprised of a Professor of Fine Arts, the Dean of the Graduate School, and a member of the Board of Trustees.
THE JEAN MATTOX MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP IN DANCE The Jean Mattox Memorial Scholarship in Dance was established with gifts from family, friends, and faculty members in memory of this University of New Hampshire dance faculty member. Income from this fund provides financial assistance to full-time undergraduate students enrolled in the University of New Hampshire. The scholarship is awarded in recognition of the recipient's outstanding talent in dance. Recipients must be entering their junior or senior year and must have been members of the UNH Dance Theatre Company for a minimum of two years. The Theatre and Dance faculty selects students of merit for this award. The award is renewable.
RICHARD A. MORSE SCHOLARSHIP This scholarship was established in 1981 in honor of Richard A. Morse, class of 1951. He was a New Hampshire attorney, chairman of the University System Board of Trustees, and long-time friend of the University. Income from this fund provides scholarship assistance to undergraduate students enrolled in the University of New Hampshire who participate in the Performing Arts. The scholarship will be awarded based on academic achievement, significant participation in the performing arts, and overall contribution to the University. Preference is given to legal residents of New Hampshire who are enrolled in the Humanities Division of the College of Liberal Arts, who are majoring in, or substantially involved on an extracurricular basis, in music, theatre, or dance. The Departments of Theatre and Dance, Music, and Communications award the recipient(s) who apply.
GARY R. O'NEAL MUSICAL THEATRE SCHOLARSHIP Gary O’Neal of Ashuelot, New Hampshire, class of 1973, established the Musical Theatre Scholarship Fund. Income from this fund provides scholarship aid to an undergraduate student(s) enrolled in the University of New Hampshire who is studying musical theatre. This scholarship is awarded in recognition of the recipient(s) achievements in performance and/or production in the programs of musical theatre. The scholarship is selected and awarded annually by a committee made up of a teacher of musical theatre, the Department Chairperson, and faculty members from the Department of Theatre and Dance and/or Music.
THE MASK & DAGGER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD In 1940, the UNH Mask and Dagger Society began providing awards to Theatre and Dance students. Awards are given to majors who have the potential to make outstanding artistic contributions in: Acting, Dance, Design and Theatre Technology, Musical Theatre, and/or General Theatre.
Awards and Competitions
THE ANNA ZORNIO MEMORIAL PLAYWRITING AWARD The family and friends of Anna Zornio established this award in 1979 to aid students and others with an interest in writing scripts for Children's Theatre. A nation-wide search is conducted every four years for the best original children's script, with the winner being selected by the director and faculty of the Youth Drama Program at the University of New Hampshire. A cash award will be presented to the prize-winning playwright and UNH students and faculty will produce a premier performance of the play.
KENNEDY CENTER AMERICAN COLLEGE THEATRE FESTIVAL (KC/ACTF) The annual KC/ACTF is a national competition that recognizes excellence in college theatre. UNH is a member of Region I (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont) and rotates to serve as the regional host. Regional theatre competitions continue throughout the USA until the end of February. A National Selection Team (compromised of academic and non-academic theatre professionals) select four to six of the best and most diverse regional productions for advancement to the national competition. National competitions take place at The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.
Irene Ryan Acting Scholarships In 1972 the Irene Ryan Foundation was established in Encino , California through the generosity of the late Irene Ryan. She died in 1973 and can best remembered for her portrayal of ‘Granny Clampett’ in "The Beverly Hillbillies." The Irene Ryan Acting Scholarships are awarded to outstanding student performers at each regional KC/ACTF. Each college or university in the KC/ACTF competition can nominate one student (per production) for the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship. This is an on-going competition. Only two actors are chosen from the regional competition (winning $500). The winners advance to the KC/ACTF national competition to take part in the Evening of scenes which is viewed by leading directors, producers, and casting agents. Each region takes part on this level of competition (16 representatives) and only two will win the additional $2500 scholarship.
The University/Resident Theatre Associate (U/RTA) Regional winners of the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship will also be invited by the University/Resident Theatre Associate (U/RTA) to attend their final auditions at the annual National Unified Auditions and Interviews (NUA/IS). The U/RTA, NUA/IS provide the opportunity to vie for numerous positions with professional training programs at leading graduation schools across the country, for seasonal employment with summer theatre companies, and for Shakespeare festivals and other professional producing organizations.
National finalists are also eligible for consideration for:
- Cash awards through the Mark Twain Comedy Acting Award
- The KC/ACTF Classical Acting Award
- Fellowships to the National Stage Combat Workshop, the Williamstown Theater Festival (minority candidates), and the Shakespeare Summer Classical Acting Workshop
- The Kingsley Colton Award (given to the best partner appearing in the evening of scenes)