Department of Theater and Dance Names 2022 Awards and Fellowship Recipients

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas Department of Theater and Dance has recognized 53 students as recipients of its year-end awards and scholarships, totaling more than $225,000 in financial support.

“Our awards and scholarships give us the opportunity to celebrate some of the many outstanding achievements of our students and to make a real difference in helping them achieve their goals,” said Henry Bial, Professor and Department Head. “We are grateful to the many generous alumni and friends whose donations help students financially. The department has more than three dozen named scholarships and awards, which preserve the legacy of our donors through the support of burgeoning theater and dance artists.

The Kuhlke Humanitarian Award was presented to Maya Gold, of Vernon Hills, Illinois, who earned her bachelor’s degree in dance, for her humanitarian services to the department. The Kilty Kane Award, the highest honor that can be bestowed in recognition of outstanding contributions to college theatre, was presented to Chris Pendry, of Lawrence, who earned his BA in Theater Performance with a double major in Film Production. Both students have made significant contributions to the life of the department, both on and off stage, Bial said. Additionally, Katherine Pryor, a longtime department administrator who most recently served as Director of University Theater, was co-named as this year’s Kilty Kane Award recipient in honor of her retirement. Both awards are named after actors (Jerome Kilty and Emeritus Professor William Kuhlke) credited with memorable performances as guest artists at Murphy Hall.

The Elizabeth Sherbon Award, named after the retired KU dance teacher who established the dance major at KU, has been awarded to outstanding dance students. This year’s recipients are Johnny Dinh Phan, from Overland Park, a dance student majoring in biochemistry, and Olivia Johnson, from Clive, Iowa, a dance student majoring in math. Both have recently completed their freshman year.

The recipients of the scholarships and prizes are as follows:


Katelyn Arnold, Topeka, Julie Damron-Dittmer Fellowship

Anna Avery, Overland Park, Claire Reinhold Fellowship

Lane Barrette, Basehor, Allen Crafton Memorial Scholarship, Patricia Joyce Ellis Scholarship

Renee Cyr, Lawrence, Donald and Betty Dixon Fellowship in Theatre, Margaret Bushong Theater Fellowship

Johnny Dinh Phan, Overland Park, Elizabeth Sherbon Award, Dance General Scholarship, Lee Family Scholarship in Dance

Syndey Ebner, Shawnee, Janet Hamburg Dance Fellowship

Andrew Ens, Olathe, General Theater Fellowship

Ella Galbraith, Andale, Shirley and Tom P. Rea Memorial Award

Coy Garrett, Lawrence, Loren Kennedy Stage

Jake Gillespie Award, Lawrence, Jack B. Wright

Samantha Gotskind, Overland Park, Claire Reinhold Fellowship

Stephanie Hartz, Topeka, General Dance Scholarship

Anna Hastings, Olathe, Janet Hamburg Dance Fellowship

Timmia Hearn DeRoy, Lawrence, Joseph R. Roach Thesis Research Fellowship

Isobel Langham, Topeka, General Dance Scholarship

Cassandra Ludlum, Topeka, Marilyn Hunt Scharine Costume Design Award, New Theater Guild Foundation: William and Penny Gamm Fellowship, and Margaret Bushong and Suzanne Calvin Fellowship

India MacDonald, Topeka, New Theater Guild Foundation: Don Knotts Fellowship, Loren Kennedy Intern Co-Coordinator and Richard Kelton Memorial Fellowship, George Sundstrom Travel Fellowship

Connor Maloney, Wichita, Alexis and Craig Stevens Performing Arts Scholarship, Loren Kennedy Scholarship/Traineeship, Kari Wahlgren Theater Scholarship

Brad Mathewson, Topeka, Charles “Buddy” Rogers Scholarship

Knox McClendon, Topeka, Glenn Bickle Award, Stephanie Ann Smith Memorial Scholarship

Rachel Meyer, Topeka, Gerhard Zuther Memorial Award for Dramatic Scriptwriting, Julie Damron-Dittmer Scholarship

Olly Mitchell, Maize, Alexis and Craig Stevens Performing Arts Scholarship, Loren Kennedy Traineeship

Caleb Parish, Lawrence, George Sundstrom Travel Fellowship

Chris Pendry, Lawrence, Kilty Kane Award

Diego Rivera-Rodriguez, Lawrence, Friends of Theater Reese Saricks Scholarship, Loren Kennedy Scholarship/Trainee Coordinator

John Dylon Rohr, Arkansas City, Laura Louise Pryor Award, Brian Ten Eyck Davis Award

Anna Shelton, Hesston, General Dance Scholarship, Patricia Joyce Ellis Scholarship

Jenny Sledge, Lawrence, Loren Kennedy Scholarship

Lauren Smith, Topeka, Julie Damron-Dittmer Fellowship, Loren Kennedy Internship

Jonathan Wall, Iola, Claire Reinhold Fellowship

Annika Wallace, Atchison, Claire Reinhold Fellowship

Hazel Youngquist, Perry, Patricia Joyce Ellis Drama Fellowship, George Sundstrom Travel Fellowship


Alexandria Demps, Kansas City, Missouri, General Dance Fellowship, Bernadette Robinson Fellowship

Molly Robinson, St. Louis, Missouri, General Dance Scholarship, Harry B. Craig Dance Scholarship

Other states and countries

Marzieh Ashrafian, Iran, Ethel Hinds Burch Award for Outstanding New GTA in Theatre, Susan Tisdall Niven Fellowship

Taylor Cheek, Oklahoma, Barbara Nordling Dance Fellowship

Abbey Gabriel, California, Donald and Betty Dixon Fellowship in Theater

Hannah Gassman, Illinois, George Sundstrom Travel Fellowship

Maya Gold, Illinois, Kuhlke Humanitarian Award

Jonah Greene, Arkansas, Ethel Hinds Burch Outstanding Returning GTA in Theater Award, New Theater Guild Foundation: Jacqueline and Curt Stokes Scholarship, Adah Clarke Hagen Scholarship in Theater

Alex Hunt, Minnesota, Edna Bulkley Dance Fellowship

Olivia Johnson, Iowa, Elizabeth Sherbon Award, General Dance Fellowship, Juanita Strait Fellowship

Cullen Krishna, Nebraska, Janet Hamburg Dance Fellowship

Taiane Lacerda, Brazil, Adah Clarke Hagan Fellowship in Theater, Susan Tisdall Niven Fellowship, General Theater Fellowship

Annalee Larsen, Nebraska, Jump Start Award

Isabella Lind, California, Jon T. Eicholtz Fellowship and Acting Barbara Eden, George Sundstrom Travel Fellowship

Webster McDonald, Jamaica, Social Justice Award, New Theater Guild Foundation: Dennis D. Hennessy and Richard Carrothers Fellowship, Ambrose Saricks Family Fellowship, Moxie Talent Agency Fellowship

Madison Meade, Nebraska, Jump Start Award

Olivia Pennell, Illinois, General Dance Fellowship, Patricia Joyce Ellis Fellowship

Grace Stephan, Iowa, General Dance Fellowship, Patricia Joyce Ellis Fellowship

Asher Suski, Iowa, New Theater Guild Foundation: Dodie Myers Brown Fellowship, John David Lentz Memorial Fellowship, Julie Damron-Dittmer Fellowship, Loren Kennedy Internship

Rory Sweedler, Colorado, Elizabeth Sherbon Fellowship

Lindsay Webster, Michigan, Ethel Hinds Burch, GTA Award for Outstanding Return in Drama, David E. Blackwell Fellowship

The Department of Theater and Dance is one of the three departments of the School of Arts. As part of the KU College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, the School of the Arts offers new opportunities for collaboration across the arts and humanities, sciences, social sciences, international and interdisciplinary studies. For more information on the Department of Theater and Dance, visit For more information on our show season, visit

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