Campus & Community

Office for Arts announces annual arts prize winners

5 min read

The Office for the Arts at Harvard (OfA) and the Council on the Arts at Harvard, a standing committee of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, recently announced the winners of the annual undergraduate arts prizes presented in recognition of outstanding accomplishment in the arts for the 2004-05 academic year.

This year’s Louis Sudler Prize in the Arts, which recognizes outstanding artistic talent and achievement in the composition or performance of music, drama, dance, or the visual arts, will be presented to Michael M. Donahue ’05 and David Mahfouda ’05.

A resident of Adams House, Donahue has been awarded this prize in recognition of his work as a director. Highlights of his resume include productions of Patrick Marber’s “Closer,” Ibsen’s “Hedda Gabler,” and Moliere’s “Tartuffe” at the Loeb Experimental Theatre; “The Physicists” on the Loeb Mainstage; and the musical “She Loves Me” at the Adams Pool Theatre. Donahue’s commitment to the theater community has extended beyond his role as director; he has served as a producer, Freshman Arts Program (FAP) Proctor since his sophomore year, as a founder of the semi-annual 24-Hour Plays festival, and as an executive board liaison of the 2002-03 Harvard Radcliffe Dramatic Club (HRDC). This spring, Donahue directs his second show, “The Oresteia,” which runs April 29 through May 7, including Arts First Festival weekend.

An affiliate of Dudley House, Mahfouda has been awarded this prize in recognition of his explorations in performance art. A Visual and Environmental Studies (VES) concentrator, Mahfouda’s projects “The Human Aquarium,” “The Cube,” “Dance Conspiracy,” and “Frozen Ghost Project” have addressed the questioning of the static art object and the venues that normally house them.

Karina Mangu-Ward ’05 is recipient of the Louise Donovan Award, which recognizes a Harvard student who has done outstanding work behind the scenes in the arts (e.g., as a director, producer, or set designer).

A resident of Leverett House, Mangu-Ward has been involved in Harvard theater as a stage manager, producer, and master electrician in more than 16 productions. She has worked in a number of different venues including Agassiz Theatre, the Kronauer Space in Adams House, and the Loeb Mainstage. For the past three seasons she has stage-managed two visiting director’s projects on the mainstage: “Lorenzaccio,” directed by Jay Scheib, and “Balm in Gilead,” directed by Scott Zigler. She also served two consecutive terms as treasurer on the executive board of the HRDC and during the summer of her junior year was a producer of the Harvard-Radcliffe Summer Theatre. This spring, she will serve as stage manager for the upcoming Loeb Mainstage production of “The Oresteia.”

Johanna Karlin ’05 is the recipient of the Radcliffe Doris Cohen Levi Prize. The prize recognizes a Harvard college student who combines talent and energy with outstanding enthusiasm for musical theater at Harvard. The prize honors the memory of Doris Cohen Levi (’35 Radcliffe).

A resident of Adams House, Karlin has made significant contributions both on and off the stage. She has performed as Amalia in “She Loves Me,” Gussie in “Merrily We Roll Along,” the Queen of the Fairies in “Iolanthe,” Mrs. Mister in “The Cradle Will Rock,” and Yente in “Fiddler on the Roof.” She has also served on the 2002-03 HRDC board as campus liaison, organizing common casting; has served as a FAP proctor as well as business assistant and manager for Hasty Pudding Theatricals (153 and 154, respectively); and has worked on tech crews for numerous productions. This spring, Karlin is producing and directing The Sunken Garden Children’s Theater’s Arts First production of “The Twelve Princesses.”

Rebecca Alaly ’05 is the recipient of the first annual Suzanne Farrell Dance Prize. Named for the acclaimed dancer and former prima ballerina of the New York City Ballet, the prize recognizes a Harvard undergraduate who has demonstrated outstanding artistry in the field of dance.

A resident of Mather House, Alaly has contributed to the Harvard Dance Community as a dancer, choreographer, and administrator. Alaly serves as choreographer and rehearsal director for the Harvard Ballet Company, and is also a performing member of the Harvard Contemporary Dance Ensemble, the touring company of Harvard’s Dance Program. She has performed in all four editions of “Dancers’ Viewpointe,” the OFA’s dance program’s spring showcase. Her piece, “Inside the

Gingerbread House” featured in Dancers’ Viewpoint IV, represented Harvard at the regional American College Dance Festival (ACDF) in 2004. The piece was selected by the ACDF jury as part of its biennial showcase at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. She also received an outstanding student choreographer nomination from Dance Magazine. Alaly is a student representative on the QRAC Dance Planning Committee and this spring will serve as choreographer for the Loeb Mainstage production of “The Oresteia.” She will also have a featured piece in Dancers’ Viewpointe V.

Robert Hodgson ’05 is recipient of the Jonathan Levy Award in Drama. This prize recognizes the most promising undergraduate actor at the College.

A resident of Adams House, Hodgson has performed in both musical and play productions while at Harvard. Hodgson’s musical performances have included Mr. Bungee in William Finn’s “A New Brain,” Lewis in “Pippin,” Herold in “Assassins,” Arpad in “She Loves Me,” and Walter in “Chess.” He has also appeared in the Loeb Mainstage productions of “Balm in Gilead” as Dopey, “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead” as Rosencrantz, and in “Richard III” as Derby. His most recent performance at the Loeb Experimental Theatre this fall was as Scipio in “Caligula.” Hodgson has also performed in “Meat: A Playwright’s Festival” at the Adams Pool Theatre and has been featured in “24-Hour Plays” at Adams Kronauer Space. Hodgson has also served as the president (2003-04) and club coordinator (2002-03) of the HRDC. This month he returns to the Loeb Mainstage as Apollo/The Old Man in HRDC’s production of “The Oresteia.”