WEST PALM BEACH — Victor Monsalve, a sophomore at Boynton Beach Community High School and Majesty Smith, a junior at Inlet Grove Community High School in West Palm Beach, walked away with the top prizes in the fifth annual Alan Lebow Award for Excellence in Shakespearean Performance. The students received $1,000 each for topping the competiton.
More than 100 people attended a special reception that was held in the Khoury Family Dance Rehearsal Hall at the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.
The awards were presented by Kids’ Dreams Inc. in honor of the late Alan Lebow because “he was very passionate and knowledgeable about Shakespeare,” according to his widow, attorney Patricia Lebow.
“He had studied so hard that he was able to recite many soliloquies and countless portions of Shakespearean plays and the works of other great writers such as Kipling and Keats,” she said. “I can tell the students in this audience from experience that no matter what career path you may choose in life, the ability to recite poetry and speak clearly will always serve you well.”
The competition received 45 applicants.
Top winners Victor and Majesty and honorable mention recipients Rood Emmanuel and Isabella Letourneau were invited to perform their Shakespearean selections at the reception, along with Johnson Sinophat, a previous Alan Lebow Award top winner.
In addition to the cash prizes, the winners received tickets to a performance of Twelfth Night by the Aquila Theatre Company in the Marshall E. Rinker Sr. Playhouse.
The judges for the fifth annual Alan Lebow Award for Excellence in Shakespearean Performance were actor, director and theatre educator Beverly Blanchette, actor and theatre educator Kenneth Kay and Karen Stephens. To help the students prepare, Kim Cozort conducted two Shakespeare Audition Skills Workshops.