This year The Denny was awarded to Rachel Weekly, currently living in NYC. Katie Skelton, the 2009 recipient of The Denny wrote the letter below telling us how much recieving the award and working with Professor Dalen meant to her. The Denny is awarded to a graduating senior in the acting studio. The recipient is chosen by a class vote.
Hello! I am so so sorry that this got away from me. I had a big call back last night in San Diego and my weekend was spent prepping for that. It was to play Vanda in Venus and Fur in the Fall at the San Diego Rep. I'll let you know how it all pans out.
Anyway! Denny Award... I remember the award meant so much to me. It was special because it was from my peers. They voted for me to receive it, and it was given to me at the end of Spring Quarter Senior Year as we were all parting ways. That was a very cool way to end my time in the SOT. I felt supported by the faculty and my studio, as well as other students in the SOT at that time. People I didn't know were there congratulating me, it was quite the big deal!
I did meet Denny, and he is amazing. He taught me improv my Freshman year at OU. Improv was supposed to be so scary, but Denny created such a safe classroom setting. We all got to play, and he played too. He was goofy and funny, and there was not a soul in my studio who did not adore taking his class! I still remember the mock courtroom "Final." It was a blast.
The award was for the student who took it upon themselves to act as much as possible while still in school, who went outside of the SOT. (Something along those lines, I'm sure it's better worded!) I was all set on going to Monomoy for another summer after graduation, and from there was headed straight to my internship in Orlando, FL. Getting the money from the Denny Award certainly made this next year a bit more doable. I was NOT going to be making much money the next year at either theater, so I saved and used that scholarship money for awhile. It was a HUGE gift and I am so thankful to have received it. It is so special and such a cool thing. Denny would be happy to know I am still acting every chance I get!
Hope this helps! xoxoxoxo