Distributed May 3, 2000
For Immediate Release
News Service Contact: Mary Jo Curtis
Irene Ryan Winners’ Circle
Brown student wins national award for best college actor
Ben Steinfeld ’01 has been named the winner of the Irene Ryan Winners’ Circle best college actor award in the annual American College Theater Festival in Washington, D.C.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Brown University junior Ben Steinfeld has been named the national winner of the Irene Ryan Winners’ Circle best college actor award in the annual American College Theater Festival competition.
Steinfeld bested actors from 16 colleges across the country to win the prestigious award and a $2,500 prize during the April 23 competition at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.
Ten Brown students and their acting partners competed earlier this year in an American College Theater Festival regional competition at the University of New Hampshire. Steinfeld, who began acting in high school, was nominated to compete in the regional contest for his performance in the Brown University Theatre production A Flea in Her Ear.
Steinfeld was selected as best actor from a field of 16 national finalists after performing a five-minute program of scenes from two productions, Shakespeare’s King Lear and Neil Simon’s God’s Favorite. He performed the second scene with fellow Brown student Darius Pierce ’01.
“I’m happy to be recognized, and I’m happy to be representing Brown,” said Steinfeld, who hopes to establish a theater company following his graduation from Brown.
Originally from Brookline, Mass., Steinfeld has been a resident of Los Angeles for the last eight years. He is the son of Michael and Elizabeth Steinfeld of Los Angeles.
Two other Brown students have also been honored by the ACTF this year for their work. Dan O’Brien, who graduated in 1999 with a Masters in Fine Arts, was the winner of the Mark Twain Comedy Award. Sara Ruhl, a current MFA candidate, won the 4th Freedom Award for playwriting. Both awards, which also carry cash prizes, were announced April 23.