Lauryn Morgan Thomas
Lauryn Morgan Thomas is a senior Theatre Arts and Fiction Writing major with a certificate in Children’s Literature. A student from Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, Lauryn has been heavily involved with the Theatre Arts Department since her freshman year. Lauryn has performed in one lab and three mainstage productions, one of which provided the opportunity to audition for the off-Broadway production of Avenue Q. She also served as lighting designer for Water by the Spoonful, and focuses heavily on electrics as well as musical theatre performance. She has served as an undergraduate teaching assistant for numerous courses, one of which (Music for Theatre) earned her the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Teaching Fellowship. She was also awarded the Summer Undergraduate Research Award this past summer in order to pursue research regarding the role of children in the York Mystery Plays in York, England. Lauryn is also dedicated to student organizations, having been a member of the Musical Theatre Club (serving as Historian and Vice President), the Performance Collaborative (serving as Secretary and Vice Chair), United States Institute for Theatre Technology, and Redeye Theatre Project for the past three years. She has attended two Southeastern Theatre Conferences, and represented the Pitt Theatre Arts Department at the Pennsylvania Thespian Conference in York, Pennsylvania. Lauryn will pursue a Bachelor of Philosophy in Theatre starting this fall through the writing and performance of a one-woman show, “Losing My Mind,” and will serve as lighting designer for the mainstage Intimate Apparel and dramaturg for the mainstage Hair. Lauryn will graduate in April 2017 with the intention of performing professionally in musical theatre and working as a teaching artist. Lauryn is very grateful to the McMillan family and Theatre Arts Department for this honor and opportunity.
Louis is sincerely honored to be one of the recipients of the 2016-17 McMillian Theatre Arts Scholarship. The Theatre Arts department has been a home to Louis for his entire Pitt experience, and he wouldn’t have had it any other way. Louis is a rising senior and primarily a stage manager for the department, having served as the SM on Good Kids (which performed both here at Pitt and at SUNY New Paltz) Urinetown, Stop Kiss, and My Doomsday Off. As a production manager, Louis worked with the mathematics department to produce the Mathematics of Being Human. As chair for the Performance Collaborative (PC), Louis started the Playwriting Festival, and helps to create other performance opportunities for students. He is also a board member for USITT and RTP. Louis has sound designed as part of the illustrious team MarkoWest with fellow senior Kristen West; their designs were heard in Thugs, Bay at Nice, and the Drowsy Chaperone. This upcoming year, he is directing a student-written play as a lab, Water Eyes by Leenie Baker of last year’s playwriting festival, co-sound designing with MarkoWest on Baltimore and working as the SM on 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.