August 30, 2010
Northwest alumnus Jason Daunter, assistant stage manager for the broadway production of "Wicked," is the recipient of the Educational Theatre Association's 2010 President's Award.
A native of O'Fallon, he earned a bachelor's in technical theater from Northwest in 2003. He helped create the Northwest Dance Company, and as a senior, directed the mainstage production of "And They Dance Real Slow in Jackson."
"I have always been in the mindset that you pay it forward, and I credit Northwest, especially the theatre program, with instilling the work ethic and developing my passion for what I was able to do in this business," Daunter said. "I really firmly believe that if you work hard for something, then nobody can tell you what to do in life. I never said, 'Why can't I be on Broadway?' "
Daunter's professional training took place at Stages St. Louis, where he served as an assistant stage manager and assistant to the choreographer. His career includes regional theatre and national tours of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," "Thoroughly Modern Millie" and "Camelot," among others.
In addition to "Wicked," Daunter's Broadway credits include stage managing "Cyrano de Bergerac," starring Kevin Kline and Jennifer Garner, for which he also served as Kline's personal assistant, as well as work on "Glory Days." Other New York theatre credits include the Kennedy Center world premiere of Henry Krieger and Bill Russell's "Up in the Air;" Kathie Lee Gifford's "Saving Aimee;" "Asking for It," directed by Lynne Taylor-Corbett; and serving as artistic associate for the Acting Company's benefit performance of "The Lover and the Poet," pairing him up with Kline and Meryl Streep.
"I was impressed with Jason the first time that I met him," said EdTA Board President Debby Gibbs, who selected Daunter for the President's Award. "He is dedicated to EdTA and the International Thespian Society, and loves being able to share his talents with the next generation. He truly cares and has a great big heart."
The President's Award is selected by the EdTA Board President and given to an individual for exceptional contributions to the Association, the EdTA Board, and volunteer leadership of EdTA.
The Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) is the pre-eminent professional association for theatre arts education. Its members are a network of theatre arts educators, students, professionals and enthusiasts.
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