Virtual Monologue Competition Finalists

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(DALLAS) The nonprofit AT&T Performing Arts Center announced the names of 11 high school finalists in its inaugural Virtual Monologue Competition. This is the newest component of the Center’s award-winning arts education program serving students across North Texas.

“There is so much exciting young talent being developed in our schools,” said Debbie Storey, president and CEO of the AT&T Performing Arts Center. “Since so many students are comfortable, even adept at using virtual platforms, this allows us to showcase students from across the region.”

High school students across North Texas were invited to record and submit one-minute monologues to be reviewed by a guest panel of judges. Six of the finalists are from Wylie High School in Wylie ISD, three are from Booker T. Washington High School of the Performing and Visual Arts (BTWHSPVA) in Dallas ISD, one from Dunbar High School in Fort Worth ISD, and one from Byron Nelson High School in Northwest ISD.


Christian ArrublaBTWHSPVA (Dallas ISD)
James Bradshaw – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)
MeKayla Cook – Dunbar High School (Fort Worth ISD)
Maddy Grimes – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)
Hannah MooreBTWHSPVA (Dallas ISD)
Allison McDermott – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)
Ella Richardson – Byron Nelson High School (Northwest ISD)
Maggie Smith – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)
Cade Sturgeon – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)
Gavin Thanh YiBTWHSPVA (Dallas ISD)
Abigail Wilmarth – Wylie High School (Wylie ISD)

The finalists will receive a private coaching session with one of the Center’s professional teaching artists. A professional videographer will then record their monologue in a socially-distanced session in Hamon Hall, a performance space on the Center’s campus. The completed works will be shared at a virtual award ceremony in March when the top five winners will be announced. Those students will also receive cash prizes.

“The submissions we received were truly inspiring,” said Autumn Garrison, Director of Education and Community Engagement for the Center. “It gave us a great sense of optimism to see young people continue to perfect the craft they love during these challenging times. Congratulations to the finalists!”

The Center is encouraging students who plan to study theatre at the collegiate level to use these as part of their audition video submissions. The competition requirements and filming guidelines were intentionally made flexible to allow students to follow the audition requirements for the college programs they wish to pursue.


Sara Cardona, Executive Artistic Director, Teatro Dallas
Sara is a veteran arts education and manager, leading one of the top Latino theatre companies in the United States since 2018. She holds an MFA in Fine Arts from Temple University and a BA from the University of Texas at Austin in the honors program, where she specialized in the Latin American Studies Program.

Ashley Oliver, Soul Rep Theatre Company
Ashley is a member of Soul Rep Theatre Company where she began performing as a teenager. She holds a BA in Drama from Prairie View A&M University and since graduating, has worked as an actress, stage manager, designer, and director around the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Soul Rep is marking its 25th anniversary and is the longest running Black theatre company in Dallas history.

Jeffrey Schmidt, Artistic Director, Theatre Three
Jeffrey has worked in broadcast, film, stage, and more for over 25 years. He has led Theatre Three, one of the oldest professional regional theatres in the country since 2017. He’s also co-founder of the acclaimed The Drama Club, which produces original, highly visual, design and ensemble driven theatre.

Since March, the Center has reimagined its in-person arts experiences, translating them into virtual content. This has allowed educators and students to continue benefitting from the performing arts through distance learning. These include virtual performances, dance classes, workshops, and technical theatre training curriculum. These programs are available at no cost to all public schools in the North Texas region. For schools or districts wishing to participate and free access to this content, visit

Face-to-face programming will return as soon as safely possible.

Media Contact:
Chris Heinbaugh