DIT Student Colin Campbell wins Best Actor Award at ISDA (Irish Student Drama Awards)

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16th March 2011

Colin Campbell from Dublin Institute of Technology’s (DIT) Drama Society proved that patience and determination can pay off as he won the hugely coveted “Best Actor” award at the Irish Student Drama Association (ISDA) Awards with his play “Wasters”.

Colin is a native of Kingswood Heights in Tallaght and is in 3rd year of Mathematical Sciences in DIT Kevin Street. Throughout his time in DIT Colin has played a key role in the running and developing of the Drama Society to maintain its efficient and effective running and he was rewarded for his hard work when he walked away from the ISDA awards in Galway on Saturday with the “Best Actor Award” for his role in “Wasters”.

The ISDA (Irish Student Drama Association) festival has been running since 1947 and very many talented actors, writers and performers who are well-known on stage and screen began their theatrical careers in student drama. Over the past 63 years the festival has hosted the finest works of student drama and has launched the careers of leading figures such as Garry Hynes, Conor McPherson, Neil Jordan and Jim Sheridan along with those of outstanding performers performers such as Pauline McLynn, Marie Mullen, Fiona Shaw, Brendan Gleeson and Brendan Gleeson.

While the founders of theatre groups such as Druid and Rough Magic were inspired by their student drama and ISDA experiences. This year, NUI Galway Dramsoc hosted the largest ISDA Festival in its history - with over 45 events in 9 days.

What makes the story even more outstanding is that “Wasters” was written by Colin himself over the last 18 months. The play is set on Halloween night at the local bonfire, Jimmy "Baby" Burke tells his story of a fragile parent, a failing friendship and a forbidden love which leads to his own demise. “Wasters” is a foul mouthed, in-your-face one man play which takes us through a Dublin where pride comes before the fall and Roy Orbison sings for the lonely. The play has been getting rave reviews by all who have seen it performed over the last few months. “Wasters is one of the best self-written plays I have seen in years” said one person after Colin performed the play in DIT Aungier St last November.

Wasters was also Nominated for “Best Original Script” on the night. “Colin is one of the most talented actors and writers I have had the privilege to work with over my time in the society and he definitely deserved the win and the praise” said President of DIT Drama Society, Ian Fox.

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Colin Campbell receives his prize at the ISDA Awards

Upon receiving his award Colin was over the moon to receive such a prestigious accolade. He was very keen to state that even though it was a one man show and he won best actor it certainly wasn’t down to just him. He wanted to thank his directors John May and Orla Kinsella, all the members of DIT Drama Society who helped during the production and all his family and friends for keeping him motivated and inspired through the whole process. DIT Drama Society are also holding their annual Drama Festival over the next two weeks from the 15th-26th of March in The Teachers Club on Parnell St, Dublin 1. For further information contact the Society on ditdrama@gmail.com or on Facebook at DIT Drama Festival. Tickets are €5 for students and €8 for adults and can be booked at bookings.ditdrama@gmail.com.

Ian Fox President of the DIT Drama Society "We're all absolutely thrilled for Colin. His achievement really highlights the importance of college societies- his acting experience comes exclusively from his activity within the DIT Drama Society over the last two years. We're delighted to see that his talent, dedication and hard work have been recognised at such a high level, and we can't wait to see more of his work in the near future."

The Irish Student Drama Association (commonly referred to as ISDA) is the umbrella organization of Ireland’s most prolific third-level drama societies. The highlight of the ISDA year is the Association’s annual Theatre Festival – a week-long festival in which all member societies travel to the selected city and perform plays from their home college. The festival productions was a combination of the work of emerging student writers as well as productions of well-established plays from world-renowned playwrights. This year’s Festival will feature plays written by Brian Friel, William Shakespeare, Tom Murphy, Conor McPherson, Martin McDonagh and Harold Pinter.

During the ISDA Festival, judges are present at each main festival production. These judges assess each performance, give feedback to each production team and at the end of the Festival, decide the nominees and winners of the ISDA Awards. The judges for this year include Dolores Lyne - an Irish Times Theatre Award Winner for Set Design and Adjudicator for the same competition; Sinéad McKenna - Irish Times Theatre Award Winner for Lighting Design; she has also worked with Druid Theatre Co, notably on Enda Walsh’s An Electric Ballroom; Derbhle Crotty - one of Ireland’s leading actors. In 2009, she won the Best Actress award at the Irish Times Theatre Awards for her portrayal of Masha in the Three Sisters (Abbey Theatre). With Druid, she has appeared in the Silver Tassie, Sive and the Gigli Concert.

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