CSU to roll out red carpet for American College Theater Festival

Scott Powell

If you happen to notice a bit more perkiness around town this upcoming week, don’t panic. The Stepford Wives haven’t invaded, just the thespians. 

Next week, Feb. 17-21, Colorado State University will be welcoming drama students from all over the western United States to the annual Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival — a weeklong celebration of all things acting, singing, dancing, design, you name it. If it’s on stage, it’s at KCACTF.


Beginning in 1969, the Kennedy Center Festival seeks to create a space where emerging theater professionals from across the country can gather to showcase their work, compete for scholarships and further develop their skills through workshops taught by industry professionals.

As stated on the Kennedy Center website, “The goals of the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival are: to encourage, recognize and celebrate the finest and most diverse work produced in university and college theater programs; to provide opportunities for participants to develop their theater skills and insight and achieve professionalism; to improve the quality of college and university theater in America; (and) to encourage colleges and universities to give distinguished productions of new plays, especially those written by students; the classics, revitalized or newly conceived; and experimental works.” 

With keynote addresses from drag queen Khrys’taaal and costume designer Susan Crabtree, as well as a slurry of performances from students and drama programs across the country, the festival provides a unique insight into the theatrical world of the future and the artists who will be — and in some cases already are — building, shaping, defining and redefining our concept of theater in the coming years.

The festivities will begin with a special rerun of CSU’s spring musical “Cabaret” Feb. 13-15, with the festival officially beginning on Feb. 17.

Whether you’re a die-hard devotee of the dramatic arts or just looking for a good show, there’s something for everyone at the Kennedy Center Festival.

More information and registration details can be found on the KCACTF website

Scotty Powell can be reached at entertainment@collegian.com or on Twitter @scottysseus.