City Arts Group Lauds School of Drama Dean for His ‘Extraordinary Gifts’ to Community

Yale School of Drama dean James Bundy is among five individuals and organizations being honored by the Arts Council of Greater New Haven as artistic “ground breakers.”

Bundy, who is also artistic director of the Yale Repertory Theatre, is a recipient of the council’s 2008 Arts Awards, which are given to those whose “fresh, raw ideas spur innovative programs, unleash remarkable results and foster a lively, ambitious artistic community.” The recipients were selected by a community jury.

The theme of the 2008 Arts Awards is “Ground Breakers.” Bundy and the other award recipients will be honored at a luncheon taking place on Friday, Dec. 5, at the New Haven Lawn Club, 193 Whitney Ave. Tickets are $70 for Arts Council members and $80 for non-members. The luncheon is sponsored by Coordinated Financial Resources/Chamber Insurance Trust and Ruth Lapides.

Bundy’s citation reads: “As dean of the Yale School of Drama and artistic director of the Yale Repertory Theatre, James Bundy has offered a host of extraordinary gifts to our community. Under his direction, the Yale Rep has produced more than 20 world, American and regional premieres, two of which have been Pulitzer Prize finalists. He has provided exemplary support to his students and new playwrights, and has shown a commitment to highlighting bold, illuminating work.

“His advocacy on behalf of education programs such as WILL POWER! and the Dwight/Edgewood Project have brought the magic and mystery of the theater to hundreds of students each year,” it continues. “And due to hard work with his staff, Yale Rep now offers the most comprehensive accessibility services program for theater in the state. For the past six seasons, James Bundy’s ambitious artistic vision, invaluable mentorship and collaborative approach have not only reinvigorated the theatrical community, but have had an immeasurable impact on his students, colleagues, audiences and friends.”

The other awardees are artist and teacher Johanna Bresnick; architectural activist and historian Colin Caplan; Music Haven, an organization founded by Yale School of Music alumna Tina Lee Hidari that provides tuition-free music lessons to urban New Haven students; and Oil Drum Art, an initiative which allow artists to express their thoughts and opinions on oil drums.

In addition, the Arts Council of Greater New Haven has awarded its C. Newton Schenck III Award for Lifetime Achievement in and Contribution to the Arts to Long Wharf Theatre founder Ruth Lord.

For more information about the awards luncheon, e-mail karsenault@newhavenarts.org or call (203) 772-2788.

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