Twelve Southern California high school students have been selected for the regional finals of the August Wilson Monologue Competition, which will take place in March at the Mark Taper Forum.
"Performing in our iconic theatre will be an experience to cherish," Center Theatre Group's director of education and community partnerships, Leslie Johnson, said in a written statement. "[T]hese students will gain confidence and a deeper appreciation for August Wilson."
Wilson, who died in 2005, chronicled African-American life in his plays. Students who participate in the competition study the social and historical experiences of Wilson's characters. Center Theatre Group has presented eight of his plays, including "King Hedley II" and the Pullitzer Prize-winner "The Piano Lesson."
This is the third year that the group has put on the student monologue competition in Southern California. The competition also takes place in Atlanta, Boston, New York and Pittsburgh - Wilson's hometown.
The top three students at the March 11 regional event in downtown Los Angeles go to New York for a chance to compete in the national finals May 5.
The regional finalists are:
Maggie Cannan (Studio City)
Lana Cosic (Pasadena)
Erendira Di Giuseppe (Los Angeles)
Jonah Gould (Los Angeles)
Wayne Mackins-Harris (Los Angeles)
Ayanna McKnight (Pomona)
Wendy Morrow (Los Angeles)
Leaf Rickard (Burbank)
Derrick Rose (Yucaipa)
Shan Shaikh (Panorama City)
Mykaela Sterris (Fullerton)
Taylor Walker (Pacoima)