Evans receives national Charlene Gordon Arts Impact Award

Brannon Evans
Brannon Evans

Brannon Evans, a senior theatre performance major in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film, is one of two recipients nationally of the Charlene Gordon Arts Impact Award.

The recipients of this award are selected from the ASPIRE Arts Leadership program with the sponsorship of the Kennedy Center’s American College Theatre Festival National Committee and the College of Fellows of the American Theatre.

Evans was chosen to represent Region V of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in the national ASPIRE Arts Leadership Cohort and was in Washington, D.C. in April.

“Overall, D.C. was so amazing,” Evans said. “I learned a lot about arts administration and was able to refine the theatre company I hope to one day create. My cohort were some of the most amazing and inspiring people I’ve ever met, and there was so much support from the organizations and leaders we took workshops from. I’m excited for the future of theatre!”

The KCACTF/LORT (League of Reginal Theatres) ASPIRE Leadership Fellows Program is designed to cultivate a new generation of artistic and administrative leaders for the American theater with a focus on engaging Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) and members of other groups that are consistently underrepresented in the field. This diverse national cohort of fellows assembled from all of KCACTF’s eight regions will engage in topics concerning equity, inclusion and anti-racism, as well as leadership skills building, investigation of institutional challenges and professional networking opportunities.

Recipients of the Charlene Gordon Arts Impact Award receive mentorship with arts activist and advocate Gail Humphries, current dean and previous board member of the Fellows, and will receive funding support for participation in Arts Advocacy Day, presented by Americans for the Arts, an annual national event in Washington, D.C. Additionally, the awardees are invited to the Kennedy Center and NNPN MFA Playwrights Workshop for an eight-day summer residency for meetings with artistic leaders of 16 theatre companies from across the country, the programming and administrative leadership at the Kennedy Center and with area arts administrators.

“I have the opportunity to go back to D.C. in July and next March and am looking forward to connecting with more people and growing in this field,” Evans said.

Evans is one of the top leaders in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film. She has served as president of the Carson Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee and as an assistant artistic director for Theatrix, the student-run theatre company. She has also served as president of Boots and Cats, an a cappella group. Last year, she received the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts’ Student Leadership Award.