2016 Sudler Prize Winner Kari Barclay tasks politics and theater with making a difference

We are delighted to announce that graduating senior in Theater Studies and Political Science, Kari Barclay, is the well-deserved recipient of the 2016 Sudler Prize!

The Louis Sudler Prize in the Creative and Performing Arts is presented annually by the Duke University Council for the Arts to the graduating senior with the most exceptional record of artistic achievement throughout his or her undergraduate years.

You may have seen Kari in one of his many roles on campus and in the community. He organized and co-directed the wildly popular Me Too Monologues, served as president of Duke Players, was a writer/producer with the 2015 The Bull City Dignity Project, playwright of his senior distinction piece An Indictment, and the director of The Man Who

But you probably didn’t catch his TEDxDuke talk on using theater for a more just world by telling the untold stories that give voice to the diversity of the communities in which we live, and that he wants to see for those who are seldom heard.

He was also a 2015 American Humanity in Action Fellow and recently received the coveted Samuel Dubois Cook award for his social justice work in the Duke/Durham community?  The man is non-stop!

Department chair Jeff Storer explains why Kari was the “perfect choice” for the Sudler: 

"Kari’s unique skill set and understanding lets him synthesize his work as an actor, director, producer, and social and political activist in an integral and holistic way. He not only makes theater that makes a difference, he is able to inspire participation from a wide cohort.  As a director, Kari is an imaginative, creative problem solver who is not afraid to take on the challenging subjects present in the society we live in.”

Five marvelous students were nominated for the Sudler Prize this year:

Jenny Li (Music)

Kari Barclay (Theater Studies)

Stephanie Joe (Dance)

Katie Fernelius (CDS)

Josephine Ramsayer (Creative Writing)

Vice provost for the arts Scott Lindroth convened a selection committee from members of the Council for the Arts, which included faculty members Pedro Lasch, Brad Rogers, and Tom Rankin. He had this to say of this year’s group of nominees:

“We found this group to be the strongest pool of students in several years, and the Sudler Prize Committee regrets that they could not honor all five students for their impressive accomplishments as artists. In the end, however, the committee recommended that Kari Barclay be awarded the 2016 Sudler Prize." 

The 2016 Sudler Prize in the Creative and Performing Arts will be awarded at the Twenty-seventh Annual Arts Awards Ceremony on Saturday, May 14, 2016 during Commencement Weekend.

Congratulations Kari!