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Theatre Albany wins state contest

Theatre Albany will represent Georgia in the Southeastern Theatre Conference Convention in March after “The All Night Strut!” took top honors this weekend at the state theater conference and convention. Three Theatre members won individual honors for acting and directing. Members with the production are, from left, T.A. Gatling; Steve Felmet; Sandy Hardy Meadows, best actress winner; Lindsey Sanders; Phil Arnold, best supporting actor winner, and Mark Costello, best director.

Theatre Albany will represent Georgia in the Southeastern Theatre Conference Convention in March after “The All Night Strut!” took top honors this weekend at the state theater conference and convention. Three Theatre members won individual honors for acting and directing. Members with the production are, from left, T.A. Gatling; Steve Felmet; Sandy Hardy Meadows, best actress winner; Lindsey Sanders; Phil Arnold, best supporting actor winner, and Mark Costello, best director.

STATESBORO -- Theatre Albany Director Mark Costello said he knew his theater's production of "The All Night Strut!" which launched the current season, was something special.

In statewide competition this past weekend in Statesboro, the judges agreed.

The Theatre Albany production won first place overall and three individual awards -- best actress, best supporting actor and best director.

Taking top honor as best actress was Sandy Hardy Meadows, while Phil Arnold was named best supporting actor.

"When we performed 'The All Night Strut!' in August, I knew we had something special," said Theatre Albany Artistic Director Mark Costello, who won honors as best director. "That's the reason I wanted to enter it into the Community Theatre Festival. I wanted to let people around the state the caliber of performers we have."

As the Best Play winner at the Georgia Theatre Conference competition that was conducted this past weekend at the Averitt Center for the Arts on the campus of Georgia Southern University, Theatre Albany's production will represent the state of Georgia in March at the Southeastern Theatre Conference convention in Chattanooga, Tenn.

"The All Night Strut!" is described a classy, sassy look at the songs of the 1930s and 1940s. In addition to Meadows and Arnold, the cast Casey Perkins and Lindsey Sanders. Costello is director and the production team includes Kevin Blaise, vocal director; Casey Perkins, choreographer; Steve Felmet, set designer; T.A. Gatling, sound, and Ann Brim Streat, makeup.

"I particularly want to acknowledge the huge contribution of our pianist Cameron Cody," Costello said. "For 'The All Night Strut!' don't mean a thing without his swing!"