S.C. Arts Commission awards 4 fellowships - 3 of which go to Charleston, 2 of those to Pure Theatre

From left: Sharon Graci, Ed Madden, Barbara G.S. Hagerty, and Rodney Lee Rogers.

The South Carolina Arts Commission has approved its annual selections for the "Individual Artist Fellowship Awards." Each of the four awards carries a bounty of $5,000 for poets, prose writers, playwrights, and actors.

This year three of the four awards when to Charleston County residents, two of which are founders of Pure Theatre: Sharon Graci (acting) and Rodney Lee Rogers (playwright.)

The third Charlestonian was Barbara G.S. Hagerty a poet and writer.

Here's bios of those three and the fourth person from some other place in South Carolina:

Barbara G.S. Hagerty, Charleston County – Poetry Fellow

A native of Charleston, Barbara G.S. Hagerty is a writer currently focused on poetry. Her first chapbook, The Guest House, was published by Finishing Line Press in April 2009. She has published two books on handbags and their cultural meanings and metaphors—Purse Universe, Crane Hill Publishers; and Handbags, Running Press. Hagerty’s columns, essays and articles have appeared in a broad spectrum of regional and national media, including Town & Country, The Ladies’ Home Journal, SKIRT! and The Los Angeles Times. She has also worked as a photographer, curator, and book editor, and holds an M.A. from The Johns Hopkins University's Writing Seminars. Hagerty serves on the board of the Poetry Society of South Carolina, and is a member of Richard Garcia’s workshop, the Long Table Poets. 

Ed Madden, Richland County – Prose Fellow

Ed Madden is an associate professor of English at University of South Carolina, and directs USC’s Women’s and Gender Studies undergraduate program. He also serves as a poet-in-residence at theRichland Northeast High School’s Palmetto Center for the Arts. With a doctorate in English from theUniversity of Texas, Madden has published numerous books, poems, articles and essays. He has received at least four fellowships, including a contemporary theatre fellowship to attend the IES Abroad Dublin and London Faculty Development Seminar in 2008. Madden has also been recognized with a range of awards, including the 2008 Mortarboard Senior Honor Society Excellence in Teaching Award. He was named a 2008 S.C. Fiction Project Winner, for short story Room 208, and won the 2007 South Carolina Poetry Book Prize, for Signals, from the South Carolina Poetry Initiative and USCPress. 

Sharon Graci, Charleston County – Acting Fellow

Sharon Graci is the co-founder and artistic director of Pure Theatre. She has a bachelor’s degree in acting/theatre from Augusta State University, and has studied at Pittsburgh Conservatory of Theatre and participated in master classes in New York City and London. Graci has more than 10 years of acting and directing experience on stages such as Actor’s Theatre, Charleston Underground Theatre and Theatre 99. After leaving her corporate job with Xerox in 1996, she founded the Charleston Children’s Theatre, and has since stayed active in Charleston’s arts scene. She serves on boards and committees for several cultural organizations, including the League of Charleston Theatres and Charleston County School District Arts Advisory Steering Committee. Graci is also an active member of such groups as the Screen Actors Guild, the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers and the S.C. Arts Alliance.

Rodney Lee Rogers, Charleston County – Playwriting Fellow

A Charleston resident, Rodney Lee Rogers is co-founder and managing director of Pure Theatre. He has a B.C.A. in theatre from the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, and has taken master classes in New York City, Los Angles, Seattle and London. A playwright, screenwriter and director, Rogershas also taught at the Governor’s School for the Arts and served as a teacher and tour manager at the Charlotte Shakespeare Company. Steaming Milk and Killing Harvey Griggs are two of his original screenplays. Some of the plays that he has written are The Pillowman, which was staged at Pure Theatre, and Premeditated, which was staged at the Seattle Fringe Festival. Rogers has been recognized in such publications as The Seattle TimesSeattle WeeklyL.A. Weekly and Charleston City Paper. He was also invited as a participating playwright to the 2007 Lincoln Center Directors Lab.

Oh and for details about how the awards are granted, check out the release. And don't forget they're now accepting applicants for next year's grant in the categories of Visual Arts, Craft, Music: Performance, and Music: Composition.

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