David Turkel Wins First Place in Writing Competition for his paper, "Illusion in The Glass Menagerie and A Touch of the Poet"

Alum David Turkel wins First Place in the TxETA 2020 Scholars Debut Papers Project Competition

David Turkel (MA '20) recently won first place in the Texas Educational Theatre Association's (TxETA) 2020 Scholars Debut Papers Project (SDPP) competition. The winning paper, entitled "Illusion in The Glass Menagerie and A Touch of the Poet," makes the case that -- despite recent criticism to the contrary -- the plays of Eugene O'Neill and Tennessee Williams tend toward different attitudes about the necessity and desirability of humanity's reliance on illusion as a means of coping with existence. In connection with this competition, Turkel presented his paper as part of the SDPP Panel at TxETA's (Virtual) TheatreFest, held on September 26, 2020. Additionally, the paper will be published in the upcoming volume of Texas Theatre Journal.

When he heard about the Texas Educational Theatre Association's Debut Panel essay competition, Henry I. Schvey, Professor of Drama, felt confident that David Turkel might be an excellent fit. "His writing for me in several seminars in our Master's Degree Program in Theatre and Performance Studies was consistently strong," said Schvey, "David is a remarkably close and nuanced reader of dramatic literature, and his insights are both original and beautifully expressed. His comparative essay on Tennessee Williams and Eugene O'Neill for my spring 2020 Seminar on Williams was an extremely polished critical essay, and one that demonstrated his literary skills and portrayed our A.M. program in a very positive light."

 Since its founding in 1951, the Texas Educational Theatre Association, Inc. and its Committee on Academic and Production Standards have sought constantly to improve the status of drama and its teaching in Texas public schools and colleges.  The Mission of The Association is the support, promotion, and expansion of educational theatre by providing quality educational opportunities, a network for resources, support, and expansion, a base for advocacy, and a forum for establishing standards, programs, and projects in order to celebrate the importance of theatre arts in the human experience.