Published on May 7, 2021 by Ashley Smith  
DiPrima Medley Bonie

Samford’s Department of Theatre and Dance celebrated an amazing year of determination and talent at the annual Bonie Awards on May 1. The students and faculty gathered in the Quad and at Seibert Stadium for the awards event. Despite the challenges of performing during COVID-19, theatre students and faculty managed to present three main stage performances along with numerous smaller productions throughout the year. Events were shared with live and video audiences.

According to Chair of the Department of Theatre of Dance Mark Castle, “Despite the incredible challenges of this year, I am so proud of the work of our students, faculty and staff. They have stepped up in this time to create countless opportunities to present works that were uplifting, challenging and that show the true spirit of this community and this University. I congratulate all those who were presented with awards, and applaud the work of all the students both onstage and behind the scenes who made this season happen.”

Congratulations to these individuals for receiving the following faculty designated awards: Best Freshmen, Meredith Warren and Olivia Sundberg; Best Sophomore, Sam Riggs; Best Playwright, Lana Stringer; Eric Olson Technical Theatre Award, Tollie Boone; Julie Averett Philips Spirit of Dance Award, Catherine Cowden; Trailblazer Award, Lana Stringer; Gail Patrick Directing Award, Scott Baron; Toni Sparks (Spirit of Theatre) Award (junior),Abigail Williams; Jesse Bates Award, Chloe Tower; Outstanding Theatre Major, Nic DiPrima and Anna Medley; Outstanding Alumnus, Kat Sterling.

In addition to faculty awards, students vote for their peers. This year’s main stage awards went to: Best Leading Actress in a Play, Anna Lynn Starr and Abigayle DeBusk (Tinkerbell); Best Leading Actor in a Play, Nicholas DiPrima and Hope McMahone (Tinkerbell);Best Leading Female in a Musical, Lydia Yates and Isabella Blohme (Little Women); Best Leading Male in a Musical, Grayson Johns and Drew Fillinger (Little Women);Best Supporting Actress in a Play, Chloe Tower & Sadie Sue Long (Tinkerbell); Best Supporting Actor in a Play, Brady Hosmer and Sam Riggs (Tinkerbell);Best Supporting Actress in a Musical, Abigail Williams and Ava Williams (Little Women);Best Supporting Actor in a Musical, Benjamin Harding (Little Women);Best Featured Dancer, Anna Johnson (to Soar); Best Ensemble,Tinkerbell; Best Makeup and Hair, Hannah Walsh (Tinkerbell); Best Costume Design, McKenna Varner (Little Women); Best Lighting Design, Tollie Boone (Tinkerbell); Best Stage Manager, Tessa Hall (Little Women).

Thanks to our sponsors Mike and Mary Anne Freeman and Emma Taylor for their support of this wonderful season and we look forward to seeing you at Samford’s Theatre and Dance productions in the fall when we kick-off with our Emma Taylor Theatre for Youth Series presentation.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.