Southland College Prep student makes Broadway debut
May 23, 2013 1:44PM
Morgan Brown, under the marquee of the August Wilson Theatre on Broadway. | Supplied photo
Updated: June 27, 2013 6:10AM
Morgan Brown, 16, a Southland College Prep Charter High School junior from Matteson, recently performed on Broadway in the national finals of the Fifth Annual August Wilson Monologue competition at the August Wilson Theatre in New York.
Students from Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Pittsburgh and Seattle performed short monologues of their choosing from one of 10 plays written by the late playwright.
Southland College Prep speech and theatre director Cheryl Frazier accompanied Brown to the competition with Brown’s parents, friends and relatives.
“Morgan Brown, her teacher Cheryl Frazier and other members of the speech and theatre team are to be congratulated,” Southland CEO Blondean Davis said. “Competing on Broadway in a national tournament is a significant accomplishment for Southland.”
The late Wilson earned the Pulitzer Prize for drama twice and is recognized for his large body of work that depicts the comic and tragic aspects of the black experience in the 20th century.
Brown and the other finalists from across the United States had an opportunity to interact with well-known Wilsonian veterans and special musical guests who performed, served as judges or were guests. Among this year’s celebrity judges was Pauletta Washington, Denzel Washington’s wife.
Brown and the other finalists also attended a Broadway show, “Motown the Musical,” and worked with two of Wilson’s closest collaborators and explored popular Manhattan attractions.
Earlier this year, Brown, a member of Southland’s National Honor Society who aspires to be an attorney, took first place in the Chicago Metro August Wilson Monologue Competition. She earned a $500 prize, a partial scholarship to University of Illinois-Chicago and the all-expenses-paid trip to Broadway.
Brown, a graduate of Matteson Elementary School, and Southland College Prep junior Alexus Newson also earned the school’s first Illinois High School Association championship earlier this year when they took top honors in the Dramatic Duet Acting performance section.
Brown also qualified to attend the National Forensic League National Tournament in Birmingham, Ala., in June.