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Local high school students memorize monologues for competition

— Two local high-school students will be among 19 contestants in the 26th annual Shakespeare Competition from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 1, at Archbold Theatre at Syracuse Stage. The public-speaking contest conducted by the Syracuse branch of the English-Speaking Union of the United States will commemorating William Shakespeare’s 450th birthday.

Kat Skafidas from Liverpool High School will compete, as will Rachael Buchanan from Cicero-North Syracuse High School.

Each year winners of their local school competitions recite a monologue and sonnet with the hope of joining 60 other nationwide winners in New York City for ESU’s National Competition at the Lincoln Center in the spring. The national winner will receive a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art’s Young Actors Summer School in London. Second- and third-place winners also receive awards.

The purpose of the competition is to develop students’ understanding of Shakespeare and his universality, as well as to further friendship and understanding among all English-speaking peoples. Syracuse’s event is made possible by the support of The Allyn Foundation and The Richard Mather Fund and by the members of ESU’s Syracuse branch.

Malcolm Ingram, associate professor of voice and acting in Syracuse University’s drama department, will conduct a workshop for Syracuse’s competitors at 3 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Syracuse University’s Storch Theatre. Judging the March 1 competition will be Matthew Chiorini, Frank Fiumano and Celia Madeoy.

For information, visit esuus.org.

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