Student Profile: Alex Monsell

Student Profile: Alex Monsell

Feb 6 2014

Junior spends winter break learning the ropes at Lumina Studio Theater Photo of Alex Monsell

While most students use their winter break to relax after the fall semester, Alex Monsell,  a junior from Takoma Park, Maryland, spent his working hard. This fall, Alex received the Paul Ryan Hutton Memorial Scholarship, a $1000 stipend  awarded annually to a sophomore or junior, to participate in an internship designed for gaining practical theater experience.  Alex interned at Lumina Studio Theatre in Silver Spring, Maryland, in an intense program that had him filing, stage managing, and acting. Alex, an acting concentration, has appeared in Temple Theaters' The Crucible and The Brother/Sister Plays. He's also written plays for the department's annual Short Stuff, festival of short plays and worked crew on a couple of shows. Alex got his start at Lumina Studio at the age of eleven and now works with their youth actors in the summer. His winter internship allowed him to gain experience beyond what he's already done at Temple University, all at the theater he loves.

For this internship I did a combination of office work during the day, which included, organizing marketing plans, working on publicity packages, and even the not so glamorous, like making copies and organizing CDs and DVDs chronologically. During the evenings I stage managed, assistant directed, assistant lighting designed and acted in Lumina's production of Cardenio, a play that Shakespeare co-wrote with John Fletcher.

Since Lumina is a relatively small non-profit as far as management is concerned I had the opportunity to do just about everything that I wanted, as someone who is interested in a very full understanding of theater it was great to be able to seek  the rights to a play, draft out lighting looks, and rehearse very rare text all in one day.

Alex hopes one day to own his own theater company; he's preparing now by getting a variety of experiences. He say "I want to be confident that I can perform just about any job in the theater, so that when I’m a struggling artist I don’t need to hire as many people."  But he's also thinking about employability; "...finally, it means I’m qualified for more jobs." Since returning for the spring semester, Alex has been focused on producing his next show with  Raye Players show, a group he started last year with other Lumina Studio Theatre alums, and thinking about his post-graduation plans. "After graduation, I hope to perform some community service projects of one kind or another, Peace Corps or maybe AmeriCorps; then Grad School, although I’ve no idea as to where. And then who knows."


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